Just 96 hours removed from a resounding 5-1 victory, the Seasiders were on the reverse end of the same score line as the students from the capital turned in a sublime performance to leapfrog Aberystwyth Town in the JD Cymru Premier standings.
Despite Matthew Jones’ stunning free kick four minutes from time, a brace from Ollie Hulbert and goals apiece for Emlyn Lewis, Elliot Evans and Liam Warman condemned the Black and Green’s to their heaviest defeat of the season.
Pre match, Gavin Allen had some selection issues to contend with as first choice centre back partnership Louis Bradford and Lee Jenkins were both out injured. Rhys Davies shifted over to centre back to pair with Ian Kearney who made his first start for Aber. Full back Jones returned to the starting line up after missing Tuesday’s win against Cefn Druids.
Despite making a bright start to the game, Aber were behind after just six minutes. A rapid counter attack down the right flank was worked well across the field to Evans. The winger didn't need a second invitation to rock the men from Ceredigion, cutting inside onto his right foot and curling a beautiful shot past Connor Roberts into the back of the net.
Minutes later, the Archers nearly doubled their advantage. The Seasiders failed to clear the danger from the edge of the area and the loose ball landed at the feet of Hulbert. The man on loan from Bristol Rovers, a thorn in Aber’s side in every contest with Aber this season, turned well but his shot whistled narrowly past the post.
With only one goal in it, Aber sensed a way back into the game and a golden opportunity presented itself to the in-form Owain Jones with twenty minutes on the clock. The former Merthyr man closed down Lewis well in the Met backline, forcing him into a mistake. With the angle narrowing, he charged into the box. His shot forced a great stop from the returning Will Fuller in the Met goal.
The chance rejuvenated the hosts as they controlled the possession and the chances until the end of the half. Brad Woolridge’s header ought to have troubled the scoring but the men in red didn’t have to wait long until they did get their second.
Full back Matt Chubb found space down the right hand side before crossing to Hulbert. Like last week’s draw, his quick feet made space for him and again, like last week's draw, found the back of the net with a low drive.
The Seasiders were dealt a blow going into the second half as Stephen Hewitt was forced off with an injury. Jack Rimmer was his replacement.
In the past, trailing at Cyncoed has been a lucky omen with Aber coming from behind on two previous occasions to claim all three points at the University.
But any chance of another famous turn around were extinguished with five minutes of the second half having elapsed. Messy defending from the visitors allowed the ball to land at the feet of Tregaron native Lewis who’s deflected shot increased the hosts’ advantage.
Both sides created chances throughout the second half with Harry Franklin and Davies spurning half chances for Aber. Chubb, Warman and Hulbert all went close for the home side but couldn’t find a way past Roberts.
Met got their fourth of the evening with eight minutes to go. Hulbert got his reward for an excellent evening’s work, finishing low one on one to bag his sixth goal in just four games.
Jones offered Aber some positivity on a difficult evening minutes later. His curling free kick from twenty five yards out beat Fuller at the far post to deny the students a clean sheet for their evening’s work.
Met nearly grabbed a fifth when Evans beat the offside trap but smashed his shot against the upright but they didn’t have to wait too long for their final goal of the evening. Warman was the man on the scoresheet as he finished off an excellent solo run to rub salt into the Black and Green wounds.
A bitterly disappointing evening in the capital with Met running out deserved winners however, there is no time to rest on our laurels or feel sorry for ourselves. With three games to go, Aber will hope to finish the season as strongly as possible, starting this Tuesday in our final home game of this difficult season against Wayne Jones’ Haverfordwest County.
Photo Credit: Carl Robertson