Ryley Mace & Kane Hyett produced exceptional individual performances as Tuffley Rovers U18s came back from 1-0 down to beat Bustleholme U18s 3-1 to advance in the Midland Floodlit Youth League Cup.
Tuffley started slowly and were nearly behind inside the first minute, but keeper Kane Hyett did well to block an effort from the edge of the box.
Rovers grew into the game and were able to get Ryley Mace and Beres Nkiwane on either wing involved in their play. The former won a corner that was blocked on the goal-line, before the latter had his follow up effort blocked.
The visitors took the lead just two minutes later when the ball was chipped forward for Bustleholme forward Callum Lawton, and the striker got a foot to the ball before the rushing Hyett and broke the deadlock.
Lawton went down after the unavoidable collision and ultimately had to go off. There was nothing anyone could have done and hopefully it isn’t a major injury.
A poor clearance by Bustleholme keeper Jake Richards was headed on to Mace, the Tuffley looped the ball goalwards from about 35 yards. His effort bounced off the post as Tuffley pressed for an equaliser.
They didn’t have to wait too long for the leveler and when it came it came from Mace. Nkiwane and Jack Ellis fought well in the centre circle to win possession for the hosts and when Ellis slipped the ball through to Mace the winger left his marker for dead, before slotting the ball home.
Nkiwane and Mace continued to cause the visitors trouble and just before the break Mace nearly put Rovers in front, but his effort flew just wide.
After the break Tuffley were put under some serious pressure, with Bustleholme flying out of the blocks again. Hyett tipped a deep cross against the crossbar, but then the Tuffley keeper pulled off an absolute blinding save to keep the scores level.
With the ball driven in from the left it fell to forward Junior Enongenz in the middle of the box, but Hyett threw his left leg out to deny him a certain goal.
With just under twenty minutes left Tuffley took the lead through talisman Niall Priday. The forward who was making his return to the side after suspension was quickest to a Kyle Rogers effort that had crashed back off the crossbar.
Rogers’ introduction midway into the second half gave Tuffley an extra gear and they began to stretch Bustleholme even more. The substitute and Mace were getting in every single time.
Both wingers went close to a third. Rogers fired wide from the edge of the box and Mace saw his effort headed off the line having clipped the ball over the rushing Richards.
There were only ten minutes left on the clock when Mace was set clear again on the left and the winger had the presence of mind and ability to produce a superb curled pass into the path of Jack Ellis who slotted the ball under Richards to seal the win for Tuffley.
Elsewhere Slimbridge U18s beat Dudley 3-0 to also advance in the League Cup with Adam Bloomfield scoring a brace. Raiyan Ahmed also got his name on the scoresheet on manager Adam Coyle’s birthday. Tuffley Rovers U18s host Slimbridge U18s in the County Cup on Sunday 18th November.
Tuffley Rovers: Hyett, Woodland, Clift, Heggs, Ravenhill, Bell, Ellis, Underwood, Nkiwane, Priday, Mace
Subs: Bacon, Connor, Rogers, Chhoangalia, Richardson
Bustleholme: Richards, Smith, Fieldhouse, Harper, Day, Bentley, Kvorik, Etherington, Shaw, Lawton, Enongenz
Subs: Taylor, Stojanovic, Haydon, Gilneu
Severn Sport Man Of The Match – Ryley Mace (Tuffley Rovers U18s)