Misfiring Dorchester Town suffer Marine reverse

BY: Neil Walton – Dorset Echo Sport (@EchosportNeil)


DORCHESTER Town were condemned to a lacklustre 3-0 defeat by Swindon Supermarine in their Evo-Stik Southern Premier South tussle at the Clayson Stadium.

Ross Carmichael hit the bar after a succession of chances for the Marine, before a Neil Martin own goal handed the visitors the lead.

Conor McDonagh struck a peachy volley before Bradley Hooper slammed home a penalty when Martin handled a Connor Thompson cross.

Dorchester, who rarely looked likely to reproduce the form shown when winning their past three league outings, were completely unchanged from the XI that kicked off the memorable 4-0 FA Trophy win at Eastbourne last time out.

Steve Thompson recalled Luke Winsper after a bout of sickness and diarrhoea, while new signing Nick Hutchings took his place on the bench as substitute goalkeeper.

Hutchings and Winsper were joined in the dugout by Ash Pope, Aaron Rodriguez and Callum Rose.

Full of confidence after scoring 14 goals in three games, the Magpies tested the away defence with two good crosses into the area early on without endangering Will Henry’s goal.

Swindon created the opening chance, McDonagh’s turn and shot forcing Kingsley Latham into a parry behind for a corner which was cleared easily.

Misfortune struck the hosts soon afterwards when the stretching Josh Bailey landed awkwardly and immediately went down in visible pain clutching his knee.

The centre-back, who has been an impressive force at the back since his loan move from Bristol Rovers, was stretchered off and replaced by Rose.

Dorchester, slightly shaken, then saw Henry Spalding’s dipping shot produce another paw behind from Latham, before the towering keeper punched clear the midfielder’s corner to cap a solid start.

Latham again needed to be aware to thwart ex-Weymouth man Stuart Fleetwood, who was slipped in clean through by the lively McDonagh, the Southampton loanee standing tall to block once more.

McDonagh then fizzed a shot across the six-yard box, expertly dealt with by Martin, before Fleetwood slammed the side netting after collecting Sam Jackson’s half clearance.

Dorchester had struggled to create chances on a slippery surface and a poor first half was epitomised by a skied Antonio Diaz shot.

Diaz’s attempt stirred the Magpies somewhat and the Spaniard struck an arcing effort that was unconvincingly pushed back into a central position by Henry, the keeper fortunate to see his fumble mopped up by the Marine defence.

Henry then elected to punch a Jackson cross when untroubled but his clearance helped set up Fleetwood on the break, the forward cutting inside and forcing a corner via a deflection.

More slack play from Dorchester gifted possession to Fleetwood and he slipped in McDonagh who once more was denied by a fine Latham save.

A beautiful inswinging Diaz corner, won after Kyle Egan’s cross was touched behind, then picked out the unmarked Carmichael who headed back across goal and against the bar.

Latham had been in excellent form but was powerless to deny Swindon’s opener just before the interval when Martin prodded Spalding’s wayward shot past the stranded gloveman.

Two minutes after the resumption, Latham again proved Spalding’s nemesis after the midfielder cut inside and let fly from a narrow angle.

Egan, a quiet figure until now, marauded down the right and zipped a teasing cross beyond a sliding Diaz at the far post, but it was Swindon who scored next.

Campbell’s busy work freed space to power in a cross which was sumptuously volleyed home by McDonagh for his 13th league goal of the season.

Egan tested Henry with a curling volley and a sharp shot to the keeper’s near side, but the away stopper was equal to the task before making a flying stop to deny Diaz, whose deflected shot looked to be creeping under the bar.

Dorchester’s miserable night worsened when a prostrate Martin misjudged a Thompson cross and handled in the box, Hooper tucking the spot-kick firmly into the bottom-left corner to demote Thompson’s men to 17th.

Magpies: Latham, Egan, Martin, Carmichael (Rodriguez 69), Bailey (Rose 17), Kite, Murray, Lowes, Blair, Diaz (Pope 77), Jackson. Subs not used: Hutchings, Winsper.

Swindon Supermarine: Henry, Co Thompson, Hopkins, Edge, Ifil, M Williams, Spalding, Hooper (Bampton 90+1), Fleetwood, McDonagh, Campbell (Shepherd 81). Subs not used: Westlake, Coupe, Diaz-Benitez

Referee: Niall Clinton (Poole)

Attendance: 275