U18s Fight Back to Draw 4-4 With Crewe
Saturday, 31st Aug 2019 22:19 by James Ager
Town's U18 side came from two goals down to salvage a 4-4 draw against Crewe Alexandra at Playford Road on Saturday morning. Teddy Baker and Lewis Reed netted in the first half but the young Blues conceded four times before the break, only to fight back and grab a point thanks to second-half strikes from Harley Curtis (pictured) and Baker from the penalty spot.
Reed teed-up Baker to open the scoring in the ninth minute and the central midfielder stroked the ball into the bottom corner of the net from the edge of the box.
The visitors were level within just three minutes though when keeper Jake Alley rushed out and clattered into the on-rushing Danny Lokko, and Joe Robbins made no mistake from the resultant penalty.
On 16 Reed met Liam Gibbs's left-sided cross with a sweet side-foot volley which left visiting stopper Andrew Walklate with no chance, but10 minutes later the keeper produced a fine save to claw Colin Oppong's goal-bound header away from danger.
The visitors equalised for a second time 10 minutes before the break when Robbins played in Tyreece Onyeka and the striker toe-poked the ball into the bottom corner.
Two minutes later, the impressive Robbins struck a half-volley back across Alley with his weaker left foot, which crashed off the far post and nestled in the net before Crewe scored their fourth - and their third in just six minutes - when Robbins skipped away from Fraser Alexander and completed his hat-trick with another good finish.
Town enjoyed more of the ball during the early parts of the second half but they created little in the way of clear-cut chances until the 64th minute when Alfie Cutbush - a replacement for fellow sub Connor O'Reilly who had only been on the field two minutes before receiving a nasty gash just above his eye - curled an effort just wide from the edge of the box.
Five minutes later the Blues did pull a goal back. Captain Tommy Smith produced some fine work on the left before delivering a great cross which Curtis met with a first-time volley to steer the ball beyond Walklate.
The visitors had been defending well and probably thought they had done enough to claim the win, until Oppong was bundled over in the box with just two minutes of time remaining.
Baker stepped up and sent Walklate the wrong way from the spot, but the keeper still had work to do as he got down well to tip a shot from Oppong away in stoppage time as Adem Atay's side pressed, ultimately unsuccessfully, for a late winner.
U18s: Alley, Ruffles (O'Reilly 58 (Cutbush 60)), Smith, Alexander, Fehrenbach, Baggott, Curtis, Baker, Oppong, Gibbs, Reed (Healy 62). Unused: Bort, Kabongolo.
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