Saints boosted by strong finish

Wednesday 03 October 2012 Updated: 03/10 14:37

Southam United 2 Nuneaton Griff 1

DESPITE a 100 per cent league and cup record in September that helped Saints pull themselves up to the middle of the table, manager Lee Knibbs knows they must continue to get results.

He declared October as a “massive month” that will define his team’s season, but it looked far from hopeful as Saints trailed at half-time to a Griff side that had yet to drop a point.

But second half goals from Pawel Tomczak and Simeon Smith turned the match round in their favour as they overcame the poor conditions to finish the stronger side.

Saints keeper Ollie Manuel was first into action, tipping a free kick over the bar after six minutes. But, he was powerless to stop an 11th minute shot from Aden Moore, who ran through the defence to put Griff ahead.

New signing Mykel Beckley should have done better with a free-kick for Saints but he brought out a good save from keeper Dave Watson shortly after.

Still trailing at the interval, Saints had to step up a gear in the second half and, within four minutes of the re-start, captain Martin Thompson went close from a corner, while Neil Stacey set up Simeon Smith who fired wide.

Manuel made another good save to keep them in the match and they finally got the equaliser through Tomczak in the 76th minute with a deflected shot from a corner.

Smith put them ahead with a well-taken strike with six minutes remaining and it could have been three, but substitute Jim Graham missed a good chance in added time.

On Saturday, Saints comfortably overcame Coventry Alliance side Potters Green 5-0 in the Coventry Telegraph Challenge Cup.

Former Saints goalkeeper Jim Stott returned to Banbury Road, having re-joined Potters Green this season but he was powerless to stop Jim Graham firing the home side ahead after 30 minutes.

Ollie Manuel made a good save to protect the lead before a good cross from the left saw Simeon Smith outjump Stott to head home and double the lead in the 55th minute.

Two goals in as many minutes by George Curry and Pawel Tomczak made it 4-0 to Saints.

It could have been five after Curry set up Robbie Stephans, but the young striker failed to take advantage and was then denied by a good save from Stott.

Tom Davison completed the scoring, but another chance went begging when Craig Watkin’s penalty was saved by Stott and the defender lashed the rebound over the top.

Saints entertain Bromsgrove Sporting this Saturday (3pm). With Leamington having no fixture, the club is offering season ticket holders, VP Club and Brakes Trust members a free programme to add to what should be the biggest crowd of the season.

Meanwhile, goals from Sam Wimbush, Seff Murenzi and Cyril Okpoti saw Saints safely through to the second round of the Birmingham County FA Midweek Youth Cup with a 3-0 win over Lye Town on Monday.

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