Shefford & Sandy bounce back in double header to book third

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.
Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

Shefford & Sandy confirmed a third place finish in the East League Division One after a defeat and victory in a double header weekend.

At home to relegation threatened Cambridge on Saturday it was clear from the start which team were most up for it. Cambridge were 2-0 up at the break and the second half continued in much the same vein.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

After Cambridge collected their third, and with S&S pride stung, the hosts finally upped their intensity. In the last 15 minutes S&S were camped in Cambridge’s half and Danny Price was on hand for a neat deflection to make it 3-1 and with a few minutes left Chris Fell collected S&S’s second.

A leveller almost came via Stu Robson but the mighty relieved visitors hung on.

They travelled to Harleston in Norfolk on Sunday to face another relegation-threatened side. The Magpies came at S&S like a ton of bricks to take a two-goal lead which could have been more but for keeper Pete Houghton in goal.

What came after was a transformed S&S side that patiently built from the back to spread the ball across the defensive line. Chances fell to Liam Stevens, Stu Robson and Jamie Hall, and just before the break S&S pulled one back through Robson.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

S&S dominated the second period and Chris Fell equalised with a drag flick. Midway through the half, a good move down the left involving Jeff Hall and Doug Dawson led to Robson receiving the ball and he drifted across the Harleston ‘D’ before unleashing a great finish into the bottom right-hand corner for a 3-2 lead.

Harleston side fought back to level but S&S pressed hard to create several chances before Alyn Meredith provided a finish to make it 4-3.

It was a great team performance. Steve Williams, Ramohan Bhogal and Robson were the standout players.

The men’s IIs lost 2-0 at Berkhamsted.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

The IIIs guaranteed the Division 7SW title with two games to play after a thumping 9-0 win over Bedford Vets.

Their performance was typified by patient passing moves. The highlight was a cheeky goal from Ed De Luca, ghosting in to deflect a pass from outside of the D that caught the keeper unawares as it rolled into the goal.

Other goals came from a Steve Ashdown hat-trick, a Kev Wilson brace, Matt Stevenson and Kev Orchard. Man of the Match was the hard-working Ryan Devlin.

They IVs played Rickmansworth in the late fixture at Sandy on Saturday and narrowly went down 1-0.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

A balanced first-half saw chances at either end and S&S keeper James Steer pulled off a string of saves during some continued Ricky pressure. In the second period Ricky converted a short corner with just six minutes remaining. Minutes before, S&S were unlucky to have a goal chalked off after the official spotted a foul on an S&S player just before the ball hit the goal’s back-boards.

They travel to relegation-haunted Blueharts next.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.

Shefford & Sandy v Cambridge. Picture: Guy Wills.