Sunday 8th October, saw Ilminster carry on their season with a home game against Exeter City Ladies.
A squad of 13 took to the field, with Aimee Rowe returning for her second game of the season, Tia Shoemark, Sammie Knight and Colette Martin returned to the squad. Meg Purchase was still out injured.
Town started the game, playing some good football in the first 15 minutes, but Exeter stayed strong and no clear-cut chances developed. But it was Exeter who broke the deadlock. A good bit of work in the midfield saw the ball go to the left-hand side of the pitch, the attacker cut in well and forced keeper Charlotte Johnson into a smart save, however the ball found its way straight to the feet of a City midfielder at the top of the box, who calmly put the ball into the back of the net.
Exeter enjoyed lots of the ball for the next 10 minutes, forcing Town keeper CJ into a couple of smart saves, but eventually the pressure was too much. A good run down the right-hand side, saw the Exeter winger get a good cross in across the 6-yard box, found its way to the far post where an attacker rolled the ball into the back of the net. 28 minutes gone and Town found themselves 2-0 down.
Unfortunately for Town half time didn’t come soon enough, Exeter got a 3rd in the 40th minute. A corner came in from the right-hand side, the ball was headed clear by a town defender only to find the head an Exeter player on the edge of the box, the resulting header proved default to deal with, and the unfortunate Aimee Rowe headed the ball into her own net. 3-0 at half time.
Ilminster looked a bit sharper after the restart, getting their footing back on the game. But again, Exeter soaked up the pressure and managed to find a fourth. Some good work down the right- hand side, saw a cross pulled back to the feet of the Exeter forward who took a clever touch to get the ball out of her feet and calmly strike the ball home. 60 minutes gone and Town found themselves on the wrong side of a 4-0 score line, but the afternoon didn’t get any better.
A fifth goal followed 10 minutes later, when the Exeter central midfielder picked the ball up in space and drove forward, striking a long-range effort from 25 yards slotting it home off the inside of the post, nothing that the Ilminster keeper could do to prevent this one.
A moment to savour did come though, 5 minutes after the previous goal Ilminster managed to find the net. Some good hold up play from Shannon Crouch resulted in a well-timed pass out wide to Amy Jones. Jones worked the ball well and found some space to get a ball into the box, the cross just missed the head of Crouch, but young attacker Amy Burge was there to calmly bring the ball under control, perform a well-executed turn and neatly strike the ball home from 12 yards for her first goal in senior football.
However, Exeter managed to add one more before the final whistle in the 85th minute a good ball through the channel of the Town defence found the City attacker in space, who took the ball well and calmly finished over the keeper’s head. The game finished 6-1 to Exeter, not the performance Ilminster were after.
Ilminster travel to Torquay United on the 15th October with a 2 o’clock kick off.
Sam Clarke-First Team Assistant Manager