After a mixed start to the season the Colts welcomed Waytown Hounds to the recreation ground, and were able to field a strong side with players returning from the first team, injury and also a new signing in Wayne Crocker.
The Colts lined up in a traditional 4-4-2 with Wayne Lewis in goal, a midfield four of Ryan Mustchin, Liam Doble (C), Wayne Crocker and Dave Lock, the midfield four were Robbie Keylock, Steve Rodber, Sam Tratt and Matt Vinall, the front two were Paul Gold and Gethyn Jenkins with Daniel Haines and Blake Doble on the bench.
The Colts started the match slowly, attacking towards the fairground end, and were punished after just 5 minutes, when a teasing ball found the Waytown central midfielder unmarked in the Colts box, he was able to head a controlled finish passed Wayne Lewis and into the back of the net. The run was well timed, but the Colts were still disappointed to concede the goal in the manner that they did.
Rather than let the goal get them down, the Colts instead broke straight forward and a Paul Gold pass was met in the air by Matt Vinall, Matt was able to control the ball via a couple of keepie-ups and he then emerged from a group of 3 defenders to unleash a looping volley the lobbed the Waytown Hounds keeper, 1-1 after only 6 minutes of play.
The goal brought Ilminsters performance up and a number of good chances were then created, particularly from a Robbie Keylock run where he left his defender in his wake as he broke to the far post where he was able to cut the ball back across the open goal, unfortunately Robbie's blistering pace had meant that he was too far forward for anyone to get onto the end of the pass and the ball was cleared.
The phase of play was not without controversy as Gethyn Jenkins broke through only to be bundled over by a Waytown defender, but nothing was given by the referee.
With half time approaching, Ilminster found themselves on top, and were duly awarded when a Paul Gold ball over the top was met by Gethyn Jenkins who managed to outmuscle his defender before unleashing a shot passed the keeper to give the Colts a 2-1 half time lead.
The half time team talk was positive, with the Colts encouraged to push further up the pitch to relieve any pressure on the defence and to help with the two attackers, the second half however started slowly again.
As the half wore on, Ilminster again showed their dominance with countless chances saved by the in-form Waytown Hounds keeper, Paul Gold in particular saw a number of good strikes saved.
The drama of the second half then occurred when a goal mouth scramble saw Ilminster force two or three great saves from the keeper, the final chance however was adjudged to have hit an arm and the referee awarded the Colts with a penalty. Regular penalty taker Paul Gold was missing when a penalty was missed in the previous cup game, this time he stepped up with confidence, only to see the keeper make yet another save!
Blake Doble was introduced into the game and he showed good pace and skill to create another chance for Paul Gold, Blake also saw his own header saved by the keeper.
As the half draw towards a close the Colts were forced to defend deeper as they looked to hold onto a lead that should have been far greater, as Waytown pushed men forward the Colts were able to hit them on the counter, where a Paul Gold shot was saved at full length by the Waytown keeper, he could only push the ball out into the path of the onrushing substitute Daniel Haines who connected sweetly only to see the keeper rising to take the ball into the face and onto the post and wide. Yet another great save from the undoubted star of the day.
The Colts did hold on to pick up a good 2-1 victory over one of the top teams from last season, it was felt that the score could have been far different, but the Colts were happy to pick up what should be three valuable points in their promotion bid.
The Colts face another strong test next week when they face Hawkchurch away, a fixture that they secured a smash and grab 1-0 victory in last season.