A perfect display of counter-attacking football gave Perceys the result that their previous two performances (if not results) hinted at, as they overwhelmed a technically superior and much younger side with resolute defending and will, topped off by Chris Ballard’s first ever goals (two of them, and peaches they were too).
As they did for much of the game, Alpine (previously Torquay Town and then Boots & Laces) attacked but the defence held firm if if broached ‘keeper Mark Eaton was always at hand to ward off any shots, plus at times Alpine finishing was a little wayward.
However, maybe against the run of play – a little like Torquay at Yeovil last week – Perceys took the lead when a good move resulted in The Pornmeister, Andy Cocks slotting one away. Perceys remained on the defensive but always looked threatening when they had the ball and even though much of The Alpine football was swift and skillfull, it still failed to break through the Percey rearguard until a wondergoal was curled in from the left into the top right-hand corner of the Percey goal. 1-1
And so it remained at the break and indeed for quite a while in the second half, until Mark Faulkner – playing upfront and holding the ball up well – scored AND WITH HIS LEFT FOOT AS WELL – 2-1. At that point, although Alpine were more than capable of grabbing an equaliser, nobody in the Perceys camp felt that they would and instead talk was of changing the formation around WHEN, not if, we scored a 3rd…and what a goal it was. Chemist-cum-bookie, Chris Ballard does not look your typical footballer, but then none of us do and that is what makes Perceys so special…but the young scientist gained the ball on the right hand side and cut in…most were expecting him to release the ball to Murray, but instead he carried in Gemmillesque fashion and unleashed a fierce shot into the roof of the net. Ballo had scored and the joy for him from all the Perceys was plain to be seen.
A rather harsh penalty was awarded in Perceys favour when the Alpine ‘keeper looked to be leaving his area (off the pitch) to retrieve the ball that was going out…but veteran whistleman, Lester Shapter gave the penalty and Perceys did not turn it down as Faulkner grabbed his second.
It was a good night for The Pieman who earlier in the evening had been patrolling the Clennon Valley corridors in his big pants and nothing else with his Viz belly, probably frightening little girls doing judo or something.
And then came another moment of magic after a rather fortuitous Alpine goal, when Murray released Ballard and the bookie (what odds on this) turned prolific finisher with another sweet shot to wrap up the game for Perceys. 5-2.
Team: Eaton; Badcott, Head, Ja. Down; Cocks, Ballard; Faulkner; Started as Sub: Murray;