Gorleston 4, Felixstowe & Walton Utd 1
With seven players unavailable due to other commitments Gorleston were forced to make three changes to the side that had won their previous two games.
Josh Armes, Ricci Butler and Christy Finch came into the starting line-up. Summer signing George Jermy and David Hinton, who has joined on a three month loan from Wroxham, were given places on the bench.
Only five of the Felixstowe side featured in their 6-0 thrashing of the Greens at the Goldstar Ground in March, whilst seven of the Gorleston team played in that game.
Both sides had early efforts in the opening exchanges. Butler saw a 20 yard effort tipped over the bar by Felixstowe keeper Liam Jones, whilst at the other end Elliot Pride took two attempts to keep hold of a Danny Smy drive.
There then followed a frantic period of play that saw three goals in as many minutes.
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With twelve minutes gone Felixstowe took the lead when the Greens defence was caught out on the byline, the ball being whipped low across the box to where Remi Garrett was waiting for a simple tap in from close range.
Within two minutes the Greens had equalised when Jack Garrod cut in from the left and hit a cracking 25 yard dipping effort over the keeper and into the goal.
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Not to be outdone, virtually from the restart, Butler burst into the box from the right and curled the ball with the outside of his foot into the bottom corner of the goal to put his side ahead.
Midway through the half Gorleston countered well with Garrod and Finch linking well but Finch's shot was straight at the keeper.
Four minutes before the break Pride had to race from his line to thwart Jordan Matthews as he broke into the Greens penalty area.
With half time approaching Steve Taylor and Butler exchanged passes with the latter breaking into the box where he was felled by a Felixstowe defender, the referee pointing straight to the spot.
Butler picked himself up to confidently dispatch the penalty and give his side some breathing space at the break.
Gorleston made a sluggish start to the second half and Pride was the first keeper called into action, tipping a long range Smy shot around the post.
The Greens would have extended their lead after 51 minutes but for some good goalkeeping. An excellent Butler ball over the top saw John Bell run in behind the defence, in on goal with just the keeper to beat. As he attempted to round the keeper, Jones stretched out a hand and nabbed the ball off the end of Bell's boot.
The pace of the game dropped considerably as the intense heat began to take its toll. Gorleston were finding gaps in the Felixstowe defence with little threaded balls creating a few half chances, whilst the visitors were also finding space of their own with players struggling to recover, however, more often than not, Andy Howell was on hand to clear away any danger.
Midway through the half Pride kept out another long range effort, this time from James Buckle but on 75 minutes the game was settled.
Gary Williams played a ball into Finch, who took one touch to turn and then shoot it low, left-footed, into the bottom left corner of the goal for the Greens fourth.
As the half ended, twice Gorleston could have extended their lead. Both times Garrod was played through with Finch alongside and defenders in their wake, but both times the ball into Finch didn't find its man.
At the other end Pride again diverted a Smy effort, this time from a free kick, around the post whilst, with virtually the last kick of the game, Hinton pulled a ball back to Finch whose left foot shot to the corner this time struck the base of the post.
The game was well refereed by John Steel with good use of the advantage rule resulting in goals, and also a common sense approach, with cards not being dished out needlessly.
The Greens returned to the top of the league table with a 100% record although they are unlikely to be there by the time they play their next league game as the teams immediately behind them: Dereham, Stanway Rovers and Wisbech, all have two league games before Gorleston take on Thetford on September 4th.
It's also four wins out of four in total, and not a single yellow card so far this season, and in all four games the Greens had to come from behind. This win shows there looks to be good strength in the squad to cover injuries and suspensions later on.
• Gorleston: Elliot Pride, Carl Poppy (Kyle Howell 72), Reece Hunn, Josh Armes (Gary Williams 46), Andy Howell, Eddie Thompson, Jack Garrod, John Bell, Christy Finch, Ricci Butler (David Hinton 62), Steve Taylor
Goals: Garrod 14; Butler 15, 45(p); Finch 75
• Felixstowe & Walton Utd: Liam Jones, Arran Sheppard, Kieran Smith-Edwards (Jamie Cole 46), Remi Garrett (Ben Licence 60), James Buckle, Rhys Barber, Lewis Pemberton, Josh Capocci, Danny Smy, Ben Cranfield, Jordan Matthews
Goal: Garrett 14
• Attendance 104