Eastbourne Borough 2
Rutherford 36′, Cox 77′
Torquay United 4
Andrews 55′, Reid 56′ 83′ 90+1′
A terrific equalizer from Jake Andrews and a clinical hat-trick from Jamie Reid earned United three points. United needed to dig deep and come out fighting in the second half, and they did.
United lined up in a 3-5-2 formation with new signing Kalvin Lumbombo-Kalala taking a place in midfield for his debut. United were hit with an injury to Jamie Sendles-White early on, and George Essuman took his place.
Neither team started very well but Eastbourne grew into the game and produced the better chances in the first half. United were struggling to clear their lines and come to terms with the artificial pitch.
The Sports were beginning to catch United out, especially on the flanks. Experienced winger Dean Cox was a lively threat on the left.
Eastbourne were building up a head of steam and that told in the 36th minute when they broke the deadlock. United were failing to convincingly deal with long balls, and Alfie Rutherford took advantage when United passed up multiple opportunities to deal with a fairly simple ball forward. He was able to tap the ball into the net after Kyle Cameron seemingly had the situation under control and Shaun MacDonald had committed himself.
United nearly equalized in the 40th minute when a free-kick from Andrew found Saikou Janneh. Janneh’s header was heading achingly wide and couldn’t be tapped home by Opi Edwards coming in at the far post.
United had plenty to do in the second half, and they did more than enough, and with some style too.
Jake Andrews produced a wonderful strike to get United on level terms. He showed every ounce of his quality when he took a touch from an Opi Edwards pass and wrapped his foot around the ball to find the far corner from around 25-yards. It was a wonderful strike.
Jamie Reid scored his second after sustained pressure from United. Lumbombo-Kalala spread the ball to the right and Opi Edwards supplied a low ball into the box. Asa Hall’s low shot tested the ‘keeper before Reid followed in to put United 2-1 up.
United were pegged back to 2-2 when United failed to stop a ball into the box which found Dean Cox who finished past MacDonald. United were tested once again, but the game was to turn once again.
Striker Brett Williams was brought down in the box and the referee pointed o the spot. Up stepped Jamie Reid to send the ‘keeper the wrong way to put United 3-2 up.
Reid completed his hat-trick in added on time. He showed superb technique to kill a strongly hit low ball dead. He manoeuvred past his marker to find the bottom corner. It was a strike that oozed confidence and class.
United thanked the ebullient Yellow Army at the final whistle whose support was a valuable factor in turning the game United’s way.
See you all in seven days time when we take on Winchester City in the FA Cup at Plainmoor!
Eastbourne Borough: 1 Mark Smith, 2 Tobi Adebayo-Rowling, Kristian Campbell, Kane Wills ©, Harry Ransom, Tom Gardiner, Dean Cox, Mike West, Charlie Walker, Ryan Hall, Alfie Rutherford Subs Not Used: Yemi Odubade, Sergio Torres, Harry Pollard, Andrew Briggs, Ian Simpemba
TUFC: MacDonald (GK), Liam Davis, Jamie Sendles-White [George Essuman 11′] , Asa Hall, Jean-Yves Koue Niate, Saikou Janneh [Ruairi Keating 60′], Opi Edwards, Kyle Cameron, Jake Andrews, Jamie Reid, Kalvin Lumbombo-Kalala [Brett Williams 78′] Subs Not Used: George Burton
Referee: Gary Parsons