Three goals and a clean sheet help the Cooks make it four points in five days.
Wednesday 23rd March 2022
UHLSPORT UNITED COUNTIES LEAGUE-RESERVE DIVISION
IRCHESTER UNITED Reserves (0) 0 COGENHOE UNITED Reserves (1) 3
Iaciofano 70, 88
The Cooks returned winning ways with a 3-0 win at Irchester and moved up to 13th spot in the process. It was a very scrappy game, although the Cooks put together a few good moves as they had the better of the first half. Gibbins cut inside from the left and saw his shot deflect wide for a corner early on, whilst Irchester wasted a half-chance when their number seven sliced horribly from the edge of the box. (I couldn’t get to see their teamsheet, hence the short write-up). The Cooks took the lead on 15 minutes when the home keeper came for a free-kick and let the ball slip through his hands and it was Ben Mason who slotted the ball from close range. A great move saw Iaciofano break through the middle before playing a one-two on the edge of the box, but the goalkeeper came off his line to dive at his feet just before the home four became the only player to be shown the yellow card on the night for bringing down Short after a lovely touch had beaten the defender.
Irchester again sliced wide from a good position, then a lovely ball from Wootton picked out Gibbins’ run and his perfect cross saw Iaciofano rise to meet it with a decent header that the keeper did well to turn over his bar. McGrath headed wide from the corner, then another Gibbins’ cross saw Iaciofano find Mason inside the box, but the striker’s shot was blocked. Iaciofano played a great ball over the defence for Mason to get deep into the box, but he overran in this time and the danger was gone.
Irchester had a great chance to level things up inside the first minute of the second-half, but the number ten put his shot wide from the middle of the box, whilst a good attacking move down the other end saw Iaciofano have a shot blocked with Irchester defending desperately in numbers. Iaciofano played the ball to Gibbins and he cut in from the left only for his shot to be blocked, but our failure to find that second goal allowed the home side to find some belief and put the Cooks defence under some pressure of their own.
The vital second goal came on 70 minutes just as it looked like Irchester were going to get back into the game. Joe Morris made a great run down the left before cutting inside and playing the ball into the danger area. Luca Iaciofano saw his shot saved by the keeper, but the Cooks forward was first to the rebound and he lifted the ball over the Irchester custodian and high into the net from the centre of the box.
Gyamfi forced a near post save out of the keeper after turning sharply inside the box as both subs made an impact, then Short cut inside a hit a great curling shot from the edge of the box that saw the keeper dive to his right to make a great save. The game was finally killed off with two minutes remaining as a good touch from Gyamfi found Iaciofano in space and he hit a superb drive from 20-yards out that flew past the keeper and just inside the near post for the goal of the night.
Cooks; 1 Ciaran Wells 2. Archie Shaw 3. Sam Harris 4. Josh Wootton 5. James McGrath 6. Jake Walpole © 7. Connor Gibbins 8. Luke Andrews 9. Luca Iaciofano 10. Ben Mason 11. Ben Short. Subs both used; 12. Kelvin Gyamfi 14. Joe Morris.
Referee; Kevin Seckington.