CALOR LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION: Frome Town 2 Bideford 0
THE FROME Town resurgence continued last night as Adrian Foster's men claimed the scalp of promotion-chasing Bideford to notch up a fourth league victory in five matches.
Both sides started brightly and the first chance arrived in the 11th minute as a Ben Wood throw-in caused problems in the the Bideford box, allowing Ricky Hulbert to hit a speculative overhead kick that just whistled past the far post.
Immediately afterwards, a sweeping Bideford attack allowed Craig Duff to advance clean through on goal but he pulled his shot wide from 18 yards when he seemed certain to score, or at the very least bring a save from Darren Chitty.
Controversy erupted in the 16th minute as Matt Smith overreached for a ball and caught Sean Downing with a late challenge that provoked a minor melee and a yellow card for the Frome midfielder.
Meanwhile, the hosts' Kris Miller was also quickly on the receiving end of a yellow as Downing was once again on the end of a late challenge.
Duff should really have put Bideford ahead in the 21st minute as he managed to head over the bar from an unmarked position ten yards out, and at this stage, the visitors were in the driving seat and Frome were having to work hard to stay on level terms.
Bideford’s Ian Sampson was fortunate to stay on the pitch in the 28th minute as he clattered Wood as he looked to push the ball past him, provoking another melee, and bookings for for Sampson and Steve Orchard.
Despite the rising count of yellow cards, this was still a good clean, open game and as the half wore on Frome came back into it and Miller did well to get on the end of a Smith cross and square the ball invitingly back across the goal line.
An even start to the second half led to a great block tackle by Tim Stephenson to deny Bideford and then the first real chance of the half saw the visitors' Graham Mercieca evade two challenges and advance on goal, but once again the strike was well wide of the target.
Frome’s opening goal arrived in the 61st minute as a great run from Ben Thomson saw him power past two central defenders and push the ball past goalkeeper Steve Oliver, only to be taken down by the keeper's despairing lunge.
Miller stepped up to take the penalty and coolly sent Oliver the wrong way to give Frome a 1-0 lead.
At this stage, it was still all to play for and both sides had chances, with Bideford’s Rob Farkin glancing a header wide and both Smith and Wood bringing saves from Oliver at the other end.
However, it was Foster's men who got the next goal in the 72nd minute as a long Wood throw landed in the Bideford area and central defender Rhys Baggridge controlled it, span and shot firmly into the far corner from ten yards out.
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