A much changed Parkway ease into the next round of the County Cup

Ivybridge Town vs Parkway | Match Report

Parkway made their shortest away trip of the season, a mere hop up the A38, for the rearranged 2nd round tie in the Devon St Lukes Bowl against Ivybridge Town. A tough challenge was expected against the unbeaten runaway leaders of the step 3 South West Peninsula League East Division.

4 changes were made from Saturdays away win at Walton Hersham with Joe Belsten, Dylan Jones, Matt Wright and Cameron Sangster, making his full debut, starting in place of Shane White, Reece Thomson, Rio Garside and the unavailable Callum Hall. 

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Full Time
Graham Lloyd

Full Match Report

Parkway made a lively start applying early pressure with Ryan Lane’s 4th minute free kick comfortably saved by Kane Gregory. Parkway playing with intensity and at a high tempo continued to dominate with Toby Down’s header from corner in the 8th being deflected for another corner with Gregory punching clear only as far as Dylan Jones who hooked his effort narrowly over.

On 10 minutes Lane and Jack Crago linked well along the left with Crago’s shot from around 20 yards parried away and the ball forced home from close range but disallowed for offside. Ivybridge almost took the lead on 11 minutes with their first attack with a shot coming in from the right hitting the post and Chris Wright shooting just wide from the recycled ball. Parkway continued to press high dominating possession and in their next attack good build up play along the left between Lane, Matt Wright and Mikey Williams saw the latter’s cross headed just wide by Wright.

Parkway continued to dominate in midfield with debutant Cameron Sangster beginning to impress with his energy, forceful running and range and weight of passing. Jones and Crago continued to put the home defence under pressure with their pace and running off the ball and on 15 minutes Jones went clear along the right, cut inside forcing a good save from Gregory. Connor Rush was then cautioned for an off the ball incident as Parkway continued to threaten with Lane’s shot from 25 yards deflected for a corner.

On 22 minutes Tom Purrington then saw his goalbound header deflected behind after good work and a dangerous cross by Wright with Callum Rose heading home the corner only to see his effort disallowed for a foul in the 18 yard area. Ivybridge continued to come under pressure and defended resolutely but were unable to build much momentum going forward as Parkway continued to dominate the midfield exchanges with their intensity and tenacity. On 24 minutes a long ball along the right released Jones who rounded the onrushing Gregory on the edge of the 18 yard area with his angled drive being headed over by a defender close to the goal line with Wright heading over from the corner.

On 24 minutes an Ivybridge counter attack along the left saw Jack Alexander go clear with his cross being overhit allowing Parkway to clear to Jones who, again showing good pace to beat his marker, raced clear with Gregory again doing well to parry away the shot. Parkway’s pressure eventually paid off and they took the lead on 25 minutes.

A neat interchange along the right between Wright and Crago saw Wright’s shot blocked and cause a scramble in the 6 yard area with the alert Jones reacting the quickest to poke the ball home from close range. Ivybridge continued to compete well without creating too much and on 30 minutes a break along the left saw a cross hit wastefully wide when well placed.

With Parkway looking threatening with every attack, they doubled their lead on 34 minutes. Crago and Jones both saw close range shots blocked by some desperate defending with the ball eventually falling to Williams who, showing good composure, calmly and coolly sidefooted into the bottom corner from around 15 yards. Ivybridge looked to respond positively and won their first corner on 35 minutes which was comfortably defended.

Ivybridge continued to struggle to deal with the pace of Jones and Crago and on 37 minutes a well flighted pass from Williams to Jones saw him cut inside with his shot being deflected behind for another corner.

Approaching half time Ivybridge created a period of pressure forcing a corner on 41 minutes with Purrington doing well to head clear with Adam Parkes at full stretch pushing away a long range shot for his first meaningful save of the half. Parkway ended the half the stronger and should have increased their lead further.

On 44 minutes Crago and Jones linked well with Crago outmuscling a defender and racing clear to round Gregory only for his final touch to let him down allowing a defender to intercept and concede a corner. From the corner Williams saw his powerful drive from around 15 yards pushed away by Gregory with Down blazing over the loose ball. The final action of the half saw Wright head narrowly wide from a corner with Parkway going into the break well in control of the game.

A half generally dominated and controlled by Parkway looking particularly effective in midfield and dangerous in the final third with their pace and strong running. Ivybridge competed well throughout and did well to keep the score to just 2-0 with some solid defending coupled with some fine goalkeeping but offering only the occasional threat on the counter attack.

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Attendance

Parkway made 2 changes at half time with Shane White and Rio Garside replacing Williams and Purrington in midfield.

Parkway started the second half as they finished the first and almost increased their lead in the 46th minute. Jones showing quick feet and good close control created space for himself on the edge of the 18 yard area forcing a superb save from Gregory with the resultant corner causing confusion in the 6 yard box with the ball eventually being hacked clear.

Jones again pressurised the home defence with his cross from the left being cleared. Ivybridge continued to battle hard but were being outplayed in midfield with White and Sangster impressive with their reading of situations, pressing and continually probing openings with their incisive passing.

With their continued pressure, it came as no real surprise when Parkway increased their lead further. On 54 minutes a superbly flighted free kick from around 30 yards centrally by Garside was pushed on to the post by Gregory and with Ivybridge unable to clear, Wright showing a poachers instinct prodded home from close range. Ivybridge immediately made a double substitution replacing Jordan Powell and Chris Wright.

Parkway remained in control but with the pace of the game dropping, Ivybridge began to have a bit more possession but were still unable to unduly threaten the Parkway backline with Parkes remaining untested.

On the hour Oscar Halls, returning from his one match suspension, replaced Down who once again had looked composed and comfortable at the heart of the defence alongside Rose.

Crago then broke forward at pace with Gregory again coming the host’s rescue by pushing away the shot. Ivybridge then made two further changes on 64 and 68 minutes with Connor Rush and Rio Daly being replaced and Reece Thomson then replacing Wright for Parkway on 71 minutes.

Parkway continued in the ascendancy creating further opportunities with Thomson heading narrowly over after good build up play along the right between White and Belsten.

With possession now becoming more even and the pace continuing to drop, Ivybridge’s most dangerous looking player Alexander saw a shot well blocked and cleared on 75 minutes followed by another effort going just over from the host’s next attack.

With Parkway remaining in control and looking to manage the game out, Teddy Hobbs replaced Belsten on 79 minutes with Halls then heading a corner just over after good work by Crago on the left. On 84 minutes Ivybridge countered with Alexander’s cross from the left being easily cleared. Parkway remained threatening approaching full time with a Jones cross being cleared on 85 minutes followed by Gregory tipping a shot from Crago on to the post after another telling cross by Jones.

With 4 minutes of added time indicated Parkway comfortably saw the game out to progress to the quarter final where, as the highest ranked team left in the competition, they will host step 5 Western League Willand Rovers around the 23rd/24th of January with the date to be confirmed.

An efficient, professional and hard working all round performance from Parkway against a willing and competitive Ivybridge who battled hard throughout but lacked the necessary quality in vital areas to impose themselves on the game.

Had it not been for some solid defending and outstanding goalkeeping the margin of victory could well have been greater. With 3 steps in the pyramid separating the sides respective leagues, the standard between steps 3 and 6 was clearly evident and ultimately the difference between the 2 sides. 

Weather permitting Parkway now have 2 home consecutive home games with the previously postponed fixture against bottom side Didcot Town rearranged for this Saturday with 8th placed Bracknell the visitors to Bolitho Park the following Saturday.

Parkway will be encouraged by their recent performance and will hope to build on them as they look to start climbing the table. 

Match Info

Line-ups:

Ivybridge Town:

1 Gregory, 2 Legrice, 3 J Lane, 4 Powell (25 – 55), 5 Pocock ©, 6 Zimmerman, 7 Hewings (17-71), 18 Rush (10 – 64), 8 Daly (Mabin 68), 9 C Wright (Raven 55), 11 Alexander

Substitutes: Apologies – uncertain as to the numbers of all the substitutes so when their names have not been known have just entered their numbers and time of change. 

Gamble, Forward, Raven, CJ Pritchard, Mabin

Plymouth Parkway:

1 Parkes, 2 Belsten (Hobbs 79), 3 R lane ©, 4 Sangster, 5 Rose, 6 Down (Halls 60), 7 Williams (Garside 46), 8 Purrington (White 46), 9 Jones 11 Crago, 17 M Wright (Thomson 71)

Substitutes:

12 Garside, 14 White, 15 Halls, 16, Thomson, 17 Hobbs

Attendance: No idea as not announced but estimate 300-350 with maybe 60-70 away.