Saturday 23rd September
JD Welsh Premier League
Aberystwyth Town 2-3 Bangor City
Steven Hewitt broke Aberystwyth Town hearts with a 93rd minute strike to snatch all three points for Bangor City in a thrilling finale at Park Avenue on Saturday evening, writes club Media Assistant Adam Bitchell. Town had taken a deserved second-half lead, thanks to a Luke Borelli wonder-goal, before Bangor scored twice through Gary Taylor Fletcher (65) and Brayden Shaw (86) to make it 2-1. Craig Hobson equalised on 90 minutes to make it 2-2, but Hewitt’s late strike meant that the visitors left Park Avenue with all three points.
Aber made three changes to the starting line-up after last weekend’s defeat at Newtown, with Luke Borrelli, Joe Phillips and Cledan Davies replacing Mathew Jones, Jack Rimmer and Craig Hobson, and they started brightly with Phillips causing problems down Bangor’s left hand side. On 23 minutes came the game’s first real chance, with Jonny Spittle doing well to block Anderson Cayola’s low shot for the visitors. Shortly afterwards, Aber came close, as Bangor keeper Connor Roberts parried Declan Waker’s deflected effort and did well to collect the rebound ahead of Borrelli. Town continued to press as Geoff Kellaway and Ryan Wade delivered dangerous low crosses from the by-line, whilst Ryan Wollacott saw his effort on goal blocked by Bangor captain Anthony Miley. Dan Nardiello went close for the visitors at the other end, with his low shit fizzing just wide, whilst Declan Walker pulled a free-kick just wide for Aber, as the first half ended in a stalemate.
The second half proved to be a thrilling contest, with Aber again starting the half by attacking with pace and intensity. Jonny Spittle headed over from a corner whilst Geoff Kellaway delivered a tantalising ball across the six-yard box after an intricate one-two with Ryan Wade. Then, On 62 minutes came the breakthrough that Aber’s courageous play deserved. Ryan Wollacott won the ball in central midfield and charged forward before clipping an inch-perfect pass with his weaker left foot towards the back post, where Luke Borelli was waiting to volley home a sensational strike; certainly an early contender for goal of the season. But, after the introduction of talisman Gary Taylor-Fletcher from the bench, Bangor were level within just 3 minutes. Taylor-Fletcher peeled off his marker at the far post and finished expertly past Chris Mullock to make it 1-1 on 65 minutes. Town continued to battle superbly and after escaping a couple of Brayden Shaw efforts, were unlucky not to re-take the lead when Borelli swivelled and shot over the bar on 80 minutes. Cue the final minutes of madness at Park Avenue: on 86 minutes, Bangor made it 2-1 after Shaw’s magnificent back-post header, but just four minutes later Aber found the equaliser. Luke Borelli turned his marker inside the box and drilled a low ball across the penalty area for substitute Craig Hobson to bundle home, with what must have been one of his very first touches after coming on in the 87th minute. But the late drama did not end there, as Bangor claimed all three points when Steven Hewitt fired home a 25-yard strike in the 3rd minute of additional time to leave Town’s players and fans disappointed.
This was a very cruel end to what was arguably Aber’s best performance of the season, and manager Nev Powell will certainly be able to take many positives from the game, as Town now look ahead to next Friday night’s trip away to Bala Town.