Moment of brilliance a body blow to Lowestoft hopes
- Credit: Archant
A touch of brilliance can often change the course of a game – as Lowestoft found to their cost when they went down 2-0 at home to Needham Market.
Having been in control for most of the first half, Lowestoft were stunned four minutes from the break when the ball arrived at the feet of Joe Marsden who sent a superb drive flying past Luis Tibbles into the top far corner of the net.
Manager Jamie Godbold had opted to keep to the same team that had gained the victory over Stratford the previous week. The result could have been so different had Lowestoft taken the lead after just 75 seconds when Jake Reed's sublime flick sent Louis McIntosh bearing down on goal but Marcus Garnham managed to turn the ball away.
Those early minutes saw Lowestoft pressing hard, with headers from Josh Curry and Travis Cole testing Garnham and Connor Deeks firing straight at the keeper. Needham's sole reply was an effort from full-back Jake Dye that just cleared the bar.
Then came the Marsden magic and control of the game started to switch to the visitors. To show it was no fluke, the same player repeated the trick a minute later and was only denied a second by the fingertips of Tibbles. Joe Neal shot straight at Tibbles and McIntosh shot just over. Lowestoft had a great chance to draw level as Reed was played clear but was thwarted by a superb Morphew tackle as he prepared to shoot.
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That lost chance proved costly as the Marketmen doubled their lead in the 59th minute as a fine run down the right ended with the ball being played to an unmarked Luke Ingram to drill home from about 10 yards.
A high tackle from Russell Short on Deeks saw Needham reduced to 10 men for the final 25 minutes. In an effort to get back into the game Lowestoft made a triple change, with Miguel Lopez, Jacek Zielonka and Marcus Wilkinson all entering the fray.
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As would be expected, Needham were content to keep the Trawlerboys at bay, although they had a few anxious moments in their penalty area. It summed up Lowestoft's day a couple of minutes before the end when Zielonka's corner was nodded down by Deeks to Malachi Linton whose shot from close range slammed against the upright.
Lowestoft: Tibbles, Curry, Richardson (Marcus Wilkinson 76), Deeks, Cole, Tann, Williams (Zielonka 72), Fisk, Reed, Linton, McIntosh (Lopez 72), Sub not used: Blowers.
Needham Market: Garnham, Dye, Sturgess, Short, K Morphew, D Morphew, Ingram (Page 84), Squire, Neal (Godward 89), Parker, Marsden (N Collard 90), Subs not used: E Collard, Shorten.
Ref: G Laflin. Att: 416.