Gorleston give champions elect Mildenhall a good game - but it’s not enough

Kyle Baker had Gorleston's best chance of the second half at Godmanchester. Picture: DAVID HARDY.

Kyle Baker had Gorleston's best chance of the second half at Godmanchester. Picture: DAVID HARDY. - Credit: Archant

Gorleston’s slim chance of winning the title are now mathematically over after Tuesday’s home defeat against champions-elect Mildenhall.

Ricci Butler made three changes to the side that lost at Godmanchester, with Jason Thompson, Gerson Soares and Connor Ingram all absent and Isaac Burrage, Kyle Ingram and Jack Garrod replacing them.

The game began at a frantic pace with Mildenhall pressing Gorleston back in the opening exchanges with their fast, direct style.

The game went through a lull as the players got their breath back but it came to life again in the 32nd minute when Mildenhall opened the scoring. Arran Mackay picked the ball up on the right and he picked out Gareth Simpson in the middle who found the back of the net.

The second half was tight, with neither side able to worry the keepers unduly, but when Gorleston did get the ball down and play a bit they looked good.

A Jack Garrod corner was pulled back to the edge of the box to where Kyle Ingram hit a shot over the bar before, at the other end, Mackay’s cross saw Max Melanson have a shot deflected over.

Midway through the half another Garrod corner, this time crossed into the box, created chances for Aaron Taylor and Ingram but both efforts were blocked.

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The next chance came in the 77th minute when a cracking Kyle Baker through ball played in Joel Watts but his shot was easy for the keeper.

Play switched to the other end where Taurean Molloy had to get down quickly to keep out a Mackay effort.

Gorleston fans were pleased to see a return for Alex Kounnas as he came off the bench.

The Greens had to push on in search of an equaliser but, with five minutes remaining, Mildenhall made sure of the points. A slip at the back allowed Hall to play Mackay in on the right and he headed goalwards, slotting the ball past keeper Molloy.

Match sponsors Kevin and Veronica Antcliffe awarded the Batemans man-of-the-match to Isaac Burrage.

Gorleston: Molloy, Clements (Stanton 90), Wise (Kounnas 83), Burrage, Yusuff, Taylor, Ingram, Goreham (Saunders 72), Garrod, Baker, Watts

Attendance: 118