BY LEWIS BIGMORE
A magnificent performance from Basingstoke at The Special Effect Stadium delivered a 4-1 victory against Frome Town.
Coming off the back of a tough and unjust defeat at The Camrose versus Poole Town, The Dragons were keen to move on and grab a victory in Somerset.
From the first minute of play, Basingstoke dominated possession and showcased their quality through the likes of Smart and Akers on the wings.
Only eight minutes in and Basingstoke made it 1-0, setting the tone for the rest of the match and showing the swagger needed after last weekend. Dean Stow collected the ball on the right hand side and coming into the opposition half he found Smart. Sam Smart continued the good work and crossed the ball into the box, finding Argent open. Beating the centre back, Sam Argent was able to place the ball past James Carey and make it one nil.
The goal only helped to boost ‘Stoke’s confidence levels and another chance came along. Being played through, Sam Smart found himself one-on-one with the goalkeeper but wasn’t able to squeeze it past the opposing keeper.
Basingstoke kept pushing and pushing to extend their lead and their efforts didn’t end in vain.
The second goal came courtesy of Dean Stow with a cracking corner which found the head of Shane Hollamby who towered over the Frome defenders and sent his effort on target. The ball crept over the line as the home side desperately tried to kept it out. It wasn’t to be and the scoreline read 2-0.
It took till the 42nd minute for Frome to register their first shot on target. Collecting the ball in the box, Dan Cottle fired on target, calling on Colm McAdden for the first time. Getting low, McAdden was able to keep the ball out and go into halftime with a clean sheet intact.
Before the whistle could go for half time, the chance for another goal presented itself thanks to a penalty awarded by today’s referee, Stacey Pearson.
Charlie Kennedy was tackled to the ground by the Frome defender and up stepped Dean Stow from the spot. As he did last Saturday, Stow calmly slotted the ball home into the top right corner. It was 3-0 and and the half time whistle hadn’t even come yet!
HALF TIME: 0-3
A few half chances came and went with Sam Argent looking eager to add another goal and Bennett having an ambitious effort from 40 yards out with a free kick.
Frome grew into the match and were rewarded with a consolation goal through Dan Cottle. Spinning on the ball in the area, he curled his effort with the left boot into the top left corner past Colm McAdden. The Basingstoke number one was unlucky but in truth, there was no chance keeping it out.
Rather than allowing Frome to use that goal as momentum for an unexpected comeback, Basingstoke chose attack over defence and restored the three goal advantage. After horrible defending, Zidan Akers nicked the ball off the Frome defender and ran down the left wing, looking for a teammate. Luckily for him and the Basingstoke faithful, Sam Deadfield was there to put the ball home and make certain of the three points.
From that point on, manager Jason Bristow made a string of changes including the two goalscorers, Argent and Deadfield – ahead of the game in two days time vs Gosport at The Camrose.
The substitutions and with one eye on the match on Monday, Basingstoke understandably took their foot off the gas for the last twenty minutes. Frome took over proceedings to try and find their second of the afternoon but never generated any clear chances to make the scoreline look that bit more respectable.
A perfect response to the loss versus Poole and one can hope that this bank holiday weekend gets even better on Monday!
FULL TIME: 1-4