Rovers travelled to the picturesque venue of last year’s champions and secured three valuable points in what can be described as a workman like performance which at times lacked some of the fluidity of Saturday.
Scott was able to shuffle his pack with work commitments depriving him of Dan Western and James Clampin. He also choose to rest leading scorer dean Stamp and himself. Jake Vickers started his first game for the club and Danny Baily, James Ansell and Dave Hambly were all promoted off the bench to start.
Bobby Hopkinson produced a man of the match performance with a majestic midfield display, full of power, aggression, pacing and willing running. He’s certainly starting to make Rovers tick and even when he came in for some rough treatment and received no protection from the referee he just got on with it and played his game.
As early as the 2nd minute Rovers created their first chance in what was to be a half of missed opportunities with Baily crossing for Luke Alden to head over. Two minutes later Baily himself went on a mazy run only to see his shot saved. In the 8th minute again Baily fired from distance just wide. In the 12th minute from a well worked corner Simon Hill’s cushioned header fell to Baily whose rifled shot cannoned off the cross bar, Jake Wannell following up shot wide.
In the 21st minute Rovers took the lead after Alden’s initial shot had been sliced clear for a corner. From that set play Baily stole in at the back post to head Rovers ahead. So the Baily show continued with a left footer flashing wide and as the half drew to an end he saw his header cleared off the line.
Into the second half and with Sutton now kicking downhill enabling their keeper to launch the ball to the edge of our area meant that our back four had to be on top form. Brilliantly marshalled by Dave Steele, he and the resolute Simon Hill stopped everything that was thrown at them. One particular hard but fair tackle from Hill certainly warmed the travelling Willand supporters hearts.
Hill even had time to become a threat in the opposition penalty area with a thunderous header narrowly over. He also got on the end of another set piece and could not quite get the finishing touch in a goal mouth scramble. On the 60th minute Sam Alexander made a fingertip save from a long range swirling shot as he pushed the ball over the cross bar.
The game was won in the 85th as substitute Stamp spun sublimely having taken a chest high cross down from an energetic Hopkinson cross and fired home low into the bottom corner.
Rovers: Alexander: Wannell ©, Hill, Steele, Hambly: Baily, Jee, Hopkinson, Alden: Ansell, Vickers: Subs Stamp for Vickers (65) S Rogers not used.