Just over a year ago to the day, Lydney Town beat Longlevens 3-2 at Saw Mills…on Wednesday evening lightning struck twice as Lydney once again claimed a 3-2 win in an enthralling encounter.
The game started with both sides struggling to gain the early initiative, with Declan Morley-Lyne’s curled free kick the only chance of note in the opening 20 minutes or so, however Ash Wintle was equal to it.
But as the visitors began to take control they broke the deadlock. After smart work down the left hand side, Lewis Thompson’s cross was perfectly placed for Ross Gabriel to nod past Wintle and put his side a goal up.
One soon became two when Morley-Lyne’s long throw flew into the top corner off the head of Longlevens centre half Ed Smyllie, who had one of those nights.
With Lydney two goals to the good it felt like the game was getting away from the hosts, but just before the break Longlevens thought they had scored.
After a swinging ball to the back post was kept alive by Harry Emmett, Tommy Callinan had the whole goal at his mercy but Lydney keeper Rich Thomas somehow clawed the ball off the line – Seaman vs Sheffield United style.
Into the second half and the feeling was that Longlevens had to score before the hour mark…and they did.
Lydney had a free kick that was cleared and Longlevens leapt into attack. Will Emery crossed from the left and for the first time, forward Brad Martin had a second to take a touch and take aim – with the forward smashing home his fourth goal of the season already.
Just after the hour mark and a moment to forget for Morley-Lyne, who produced an early contender for miss of the season.
After Lewis Thompson’s strike looped up into the air off Smyllie, Ash Wintle was beaten to the ball and the big Lydney forward could only spoon the ball over the bar at the back post. A major let off for Longlevens.
Lewis Thompson scored the eventual winner after Longlevens lost the ball on the left hand side. The Lydney man carried the ball nearly 40 yards before slotting under Wintle to put Rich Kear’s men 3-1 up.
The end-to-end second half continued to provide chances and Logan Roach set up a grandstand finish with a blistering strike from the edge of the box that left Thomas no chance. 2-3 and it was edge of the seat stuff.
The visitors did well to try and see the game out, holding the ball in the corners and frustrating the hosts. But Longlevens carved out two golden opportunities.
First, after Roach’s cross was headed out from nearly under his own bar by Tom Baldwin, substitute Jay Kennedy could only curl his effort straight at Thomas.
Then, in the dying seconds the hosts won a corner which was headed over by Tommy Callinan.
Lydney’s win takes them up to 5th in the Hellenic Premier table, level on points with Westfields, Reading City & Fairford Town, whilst Longlevens remain in 10th.
Both sides are in Bluefin Sports Challenge Cup action this weekend, with Longlevens hosting Malvern Town at Saw Mills and Lydney welcome Cirencester Town Development to The Rec – both games kick off at 15:00
Longlevens: Wintle, Barnett, Long, Smyllie, Roach, O’Connor, Powell-Davis (72′), Callinan, Emmett, B Martin, Emery
Subs Not Used: C Martin, Johns, Westcarr, Winman
Lydney Town: Thomas, Baldwin, Bond (Lindsay 41′), Wright, Spark, Johnson (K Hamblett 84′), Sheen, F Hamblett, Gabriel, Morley-Lyne (Williams 78′), Thompson
Subs Not Used: Merry, Kear
Severn Sport Man Of The Match – Rich Thomas (Lydney Town)