Opener ends in a Draw
Season opener ends in 3-3 thriller
Saturday we welcomed newly promoted Prestatyn Sports F.C. to the new look Wern Mynach. A healthy crowd of 120 attended to see what turned out to be a thrilling encounter between two teams of a similar disposition.
Manger Carl Ryan rung in the changes over the off season, bringing in several new faces to strengthen the team. New boys Adam Walters and Joe Ephraim made the starting line, with youngsters Ben Fisher, Nathan Porter and George Townshend on the bench. Stephen Bratt would captain the side with Daniel Griffith moved to midfield following an outstanding season where he didn’t miss a game, the home side would set up in a 4-4-2 formation.
The match got underway with both teams bolting out of the traps, Prestatyn would have their first effort saved by New Goalkeeper Adam Walters, low to his right, the Magpies went straight up the other end down the right, Paul Lewis delivering a delightful cross in to Shane Jones, with stunning composure he brought the ball down off his chest and fired the ball on the volley past the goal keeper into net. Barmouth would score again moments later when Paul Lewis made a driving run down the left this time, went passed 2 Prestatyn players and smashed the ball off the bar, the Prestatyn goalkeeper cleared the ball off the line, but the Referee’s Assistant on the far side indicated that the ball had crossed the line to make in 2-0. It took the visitors only 5 minuets to get a goal back, on 15” Rob Dunn headed home following a well worked corner. Barmouth would be under the cosh for the remainder of the half, Captain Stephen Bratt and his defensive partner Joey Jones remaing steadfast whilt wave after wave of Prestatyn pressure was absorbed. The visitors would get a well worked goal disallowed ruled for off side on 38” which was a warning of what was to come, minuets later Darren Cassidy found himself unmarked on the right hand side for Prestatyn, he received the ball rounded the keeper and put the visitors all square going into the half time break.
The second half was a carbon copy of the first, Barmouth would start the half strongest, Paul Lewis with an effort saved early on, on the hour Dave Harding (standing in for Carl Ryan) made the first changes of the match, a bold move bringing on youngsters Ben Fisher (16) and Andrew Peter Papirnyk (18) for Llion Owen and Joe Ephraim respectively, Dave Harding would also change the formation to a 4-3-3, a move that had an instant impact with Paul Lewis seeing an effort go just wide, Andrew Peter Papirnyk would see an effort blocked after he received a wonderful pass from Shane Jones on the edge box, he saw his effort blocked by a Prestatyn defender. Nathan Porter would replace Jono Harrison on 70”, the youngster well deserving of his senior debut following an impressive performances in preseason. The visitors would take the lead for the first time on 75”, a slick counter attack from a Barmouth corner down the right ended with Tom McDougall scoring, shooting low down to the near post of the keeper. Adam Walters would be called into action again on 78“, tipping a shot from inside of the box, at full stretch out for a goal kick. 3 minutes later Barmouth would bring the score equal for the last time, a magical ball from Joey Jones following a surging run from central defence, found Paul Lewis through a crowd of players, without hesitation he moved the ball on to his shooting foot and smashed into the top corner, a superbly finished strike. The last 10 minutes would see Prestatyn pin Barmouth to their own box, Adam Walters called into action with another dramatic save at full stretch, Ben Fisher also showing maturity beyond his years getting stuck in at right back, the visitors would have a second goal ruled out for offside on 90”, their pressure didn’t pay off and the match ended all square at 3-3.
Following the match Manager Carl Ryan was full of praise for his team, a match that was played against a Prestatyn side that clearly had been together a while the boys showed determination and grit under great pressure.
Chairman William Huntley was full of praise for the visitors, commenting that the visitors would fair well in their first season in division 1. As a Club we wish all at Prestatyn, players, officials and fans a prosperous season and look forward to the reverse fixture, if it’s half as existing we’re in for a belter.
Following his 2 goals and assist, Fans Man of the Match went to Paul Lewis, a superb individual performance he’s again showing his class on the field. Credit has also got to go to goalkeeper Adam Walters, on his debut he had the crowd on their feet following some stunning saves, he will be integral to the success of the team moving forward.
Next up for The Magpies is a home fixture against Nantlle Vale this Wednesday, kickoff 18:30. Come down and support the lads.