Deeping Rangers’ brilliant run in the FA Vase came to a frustrating end today (February 2) with a 3-2 defeat at the last 16-stage at Exeter based Willand Rovers.
Deeping led twice through Sam Mooney, but the hosts twice equalised before the break, both times with shots that took wicked deflections.
Willand, who are top of the Western League, took the lead for the first time 14 minutes from time and clung on despite heavy late Deeping pressure.
Dan Schiavi created Mooney’s early goal and the big striker finished well for a second time within 60 seconds of Willand’s first equaliser to put his side back in front.
Willand’s second goal five minutes before the break was a controversial one as appeals for handball were ignored. Deeping were also unconvinced that the ball had crossed the line.
Dan Jarvis almost forced a replay with a last-gasp strike that whistled past a post.
Manager Michael Goode was proud of the efort of his players both today and in a club record run to the last 16.
“I was sad for the players who gave such a great account of themselves,” Goode said.
“I don’t know if we were the better team over 90 minutes, but we certainly had better chances. It’s been a great run though.”
Willand had worked hard to get the tie played after heavy snow in the Devon area and their reward is a quarter-final spot with a place in a Wembley final just two wins away.
Snow and ice wrecked a lot of the local action and Spalding United must have wished they’d postponed their Evo Stik Northern League game against Frickley as they lost to 90th minute goal in their East Division clash at the Sir Halley Stewart Field.
Peterborough Sports’ game at Thame in Division One Central of the Southern League was postponed and the city side saw their lead at the top reduced to a point as second-placed Bromsgrove Sprorting won 6-3 at Yaxley. Yaxley led early through Charley Sanders before free-scoring Bromsgrove, who have played three more games than Peterborough Sports, hit their stride. Tom Waumsley and Matt Sparrow also scored for the Cuckoos.
The local United Counties League programme was a whiteout apart from at Melton where Bourne lost 4-0 to the the team third in Division One.
Saturday, February 2
Fifth round: Willand Rovers 3, Deeping Rangers 2 (Mooney).
EVO STIK NORTHERN LEAGUE
East Division: Spalding Utd 0, Frickley Athletic 1.
EVO STIK SOUTHERN LEAGUE
Division One Central: Yaxley 3 (Sanders, Waumsley, Sparrow), Bromsgrove Sporting 6.
UNITED COUNTIES LEAGUE
Division One: Melton 4, Bourne 0.