Evans hoping cup win ignites Students' form
MANAGER Dave Evans hopes Exeter University's Devon Premier Cup win over Alphington on Saturday can prove to be a catalyst for their season.
The Students head into Saturday's derby against Exeter Civil Service at Topsham Road off the back of a 4-3 penalty victory over the Alphas, having drawn 1-1 after extra time.
On an appalling playing surface, Matt Langley scored after six minutes for the Students, only for John Holding to level 16 minutes later for Alphington, who host Plymstock United on Saturday.
Shaun Lyne-Ley's penalty hit the bar, allowing Tom Murray to stroke home the decisive kick.
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Evans was delighted to see his side battle to victory, and he is hoping for more of the same.
"It was a very good result and I just hope now it gives us the confidence to go on a bit of a run now," said Evans, who will be missing Pete Beadle (calf) and Magnus Assmundson (knee).
"It is our first win since Christmas. Okay, we have only played three games but hopefully now we can push on.
"It was a very close game. The pitch was not great but I think it is a credit to both teams that they played out such an entertaining game.
"It was nice to see it played in the right spirit too – the referee didn't book anyone after two hours of football."
Looking to Saturday's opponents Civil Service – who exited the cup 2-0 to Exmouth Town after goals from Dan Boere and Lloyd Gardner – Evans predicted an even match.
"Games against Civil Service are always close. Whenever we play them they are tight games," he said. "I do not know how they will react after going out of the cup at the weekend but I just hope the confidence from our win will kick-start our season."
Elsewhere, Richard Pears admits his Exmouth Town players find it easier when teams take the game to them.
Pears made the comments after beating Civil Service in the Devon Premier Cup to book a semi-final tie with Stoke Gabriel.
Pears explained that undefeated Town – who head the league standings by five points with three games in hand – struggled against a defensively-minded Civil, but find it easier when teams attack them as they look to spoil their unblemished league record.
This was in evidence two weeks ago when Galmpton United made a valiant attempt to be the first team to beat them in the league, only to be on the receiving end of a 7-1 thrashing.
"We like it when teams come out and attack us because they want to be the first to beat us in the league – that is when we play our best," said Pears, who will have Ben Clay and Ben Woolley available for the trip to Okehampton Argyle on Saturday.
"I think Civil Service came out with a game plan to frustrate us. They wanted to cancel the game out and it was not the best for the fans to watch.
"It was just a matter of time until we made the breakthrough though and it was definitely a fair result.
"I don't think they would have set themselves up in that formation and played like that if it was a league game, but being a knock-out cup game they did. I think it was a fairly negative tactic."
Pears will also have new signing James Turner – brought in from Witheridge – available after he had to serve the remainder of a suspension.
Okey head into the game in good form themselves, having five of their last seven.
The latest was Saturday's 2-1 triumph at Galmpton United, with Luke Alden (2) and Ed Squire bagging the goals.
In other matches, Budleigh Salterton welcome Galmpton United, with the Robins having made it seven away wins from 10 with a 2-1 win at Totnes & Dartington last time out. Mike Hancock and Mark Lever scored the goals.
Newton Abbot Spurs entertain Sidmouth Town in fine fettle.
Spurs thumped Plymstock United 4-0 to keep their unbeaten start to 2013 going. Goals from Matt Barkwell (2), Matt Micklewright and Tom Sercombe did the damage.
Crediton United visit a Stoke Gabriel side on Saturday who battered Teignmouth 5-1 last time out. Terry Breslan had given the Teigns an early lead.
Axminster Town were trounced 4-0 at home to Appledore.