An apparently comfortable 2-0 win against relegation bound Addiscombe in Hampshire/Surrey Regional League Division 2 was, in fact, a hard fought affair, with Winchester II’s reliant on a fantastic debut goalkeeping display by John-Mark Jeffcott-Calzado and goals from their youngest players.
It looked as though it might be a stroll in the park when Winchester opened the scoring in the first minute.
Ed Player's pass from a free hit found Stuart Swift wide left – the sprightly lead marksman driving the ball at Wessex Leopards and England Under-16 prospect Rory Penrose, who slammed his reverse strike past the Addiscombe keeper.
Despite their 50 goal season deficit and facing certain relegation, Addiscombe showed spirit, perhaps fuelled by Winchester's poor decision making, and had numerous attempts on goal, some of which were wide of the mark, but many that needed saving.
Enter 2nd XI debutant goalkeeper, Jean Mark Jeffcott-Calzado, deputising for his Kings School mentor Ally Birch, called to 1st XI duty. The young keeper made a series of stunning saves to deny Addiscombe the foothold in the game they probably deserved.
The theme continued, with missed opportunities at both ends in an error strewn game, until another Kings’ schoolboy, James Baxter, drove with the ball from 40 meters out and launched a shot to the far post that was deflected by a defender into the corner of the net to give Winchester a 2-0 winning lead.
Winchester lie fourth in the log, four points behind Andover, who smashed Southampton 9-4 in a Sports Centre fest.
But Southampton can make themselves more or less safe in the relegation scrap if they beat Romsey at Hampshire Collegiate on Saturday. Romsey lost 4-3 at Camberley & Farnborough and are second from bottom.
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