Torquay 1-1 RoversTorquay United 1
Bristol Rovers 1
Our U-18 side met their Torquay United counterparts for the third time this season last Friday and, after winning the two previous encounters, had to settle for a draw in this Youth Alliance Cup tie.
Tom Lockyer scored Rovers goal in a match that was, a fairly even contest according to Youth Team Manager Alan Walsh.
"We lost a goal after 21 seconds, which came as a little bit of a shock," said Alan, "you try to prepare the players in the changing room before the game, to be switched on from the first whistle.
"However Torquay got the ball into our box with their first attack and we didn't react, allowing their lad the chance to hit a shot into the roof of the net.
"The goal gave Torquay a little bit of confidence, and they had a brief spell where they put us under a little bit of pressure. We coped with that, though, and both sides went on to try to play football on what was a difficult surface.
"We gradually began to impose ourselves on the game and equalised after 27 minutes. A corner from the right, taken by Alefe Santos, was cleared back to him he had a touch and hit another good cross to the back post. Dominic Thomas got to the ball first, and headed it back across goal to Tom Lockyer who headed across the keeper and into the net.
"To a degree, we controlled the remainder of the first half, and in the second period I felt we created the better chances. However we were unable to take them and, given the fact that Torquay enjoyed some decent passages of play in that second period, a draw was probably a fair result."
Team: Matt Macey, Josh Southway, Danny Greenslade (Connor Finn), Laurent Mondo, Trey Anderson, Tom Lockyer, Alefe Santos, Dominic Thomas, Chad Douglas, Shaquille Hunter (Aaron Ward-Baptiste), Sam Kamara (Jay Malpas)
The game was a good warm up for the side as they prepare Wednesday evening's Second Round FA Youth Cup tie against Staines at the Memorial Stadium (KO 7.00pm).
"I went to watch Staines play Wroxham in their First Round tie last week, and we will have to be on our game if we are to go through to the next round.
"We won't be taking them for granted, or thinking we have an easy passage to round three, and will need to prepare thoroughly for the game."
Pat Keary is likely to miss the game through injury, and there are also doubts about Jamie Lucas and Aaron Bryan.
"There are no other injury worries, though, and the boys are looking forward to another opportunity to play on the Memorial Stadium pitch.
"They enjoyed playing on a good surface in the last round, against Torquay, and hopefully we can build on that. I'm sure that Staines will also be looking forward to playing here and will raise their game accordingly.
"We will have to match them for effort, and tenacity, and if we can do that I hope that our ability will enable us to come out on top."