Joy of six for Gosport Borough

George Barker. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (151663-8)
George Barker. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (151663-8)
  • Cowes Sports put to the sword in Russell-Cotes Cup
  • Ryan, Barker, Wooden, Bennett, Woodford and Vine all on target at Privett Park
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There were six goals and as many different scorers as Gosport Borough eased past Cowes Sports to reach the last eight of the Russell-Cotes Cup.

Alex Pike’s men had effectively wrapped the tie up inside the first quarter of an hour at Privett Park and proceeded to lead 5-0 by half-time.

Perry Ryan, George Barker, Dan Wooden, Justin Bennett and Ryan Woodford had all found the net before substitute Rowan Vine finished the job in the second half.

Gosport handed a senior debut to development squad goalkeeper Lewis Watch as Pike shuffled his pack ahead of the National League South trip to Margate on Saturday.

Starting berths were also handed to Elliott Wheeler, Perry Ryan and Ben Harding, who finally ended a lengthy spell out with injury.

The game started on an exceptionally sodden pitch, which needed more than an hour of maintenance to get it ready after an afternoon of heavy rain.

After all the hard work, the hosts raced into a three-goal lead inside the first 20 minutes.

Ryan set them on their way when he turned in a Barker cross.

Barker then turned from provider to scorer as he netted Borough’s second.

Good work from Rory Williams down a saturated left flank set up Wooden to hammer home the third.

Bennett added the fourth on the half-hour mark – the striker racing through a static Cowes defence to tuck the ball home.

The visitors managed to break out of their half sporadically but presented no threat to the home side.

The Yachtsmen simply could not contain a rampant Gosport and a fifth was not long in coming as Woodford converted a cross at the far post.

Cowes had their first serious chance on the stoke of half-time.

Ollie Wilson was one-on-one with Watch but the young keeper did well to close him down as Andy Robinson recovered to help.

Borough made a half-time change with Harding making way for Steve Ramsey.

And shortly afterwards TJ Cuthbertson was introduced for Wheeler.

Wilson forced an excellent save from Watch with a shot from just outside the area.

Gosport had eased up a little bit and the Wessex League visitors had a golden opportunity to pull one back when substitute James Wykes escaped the clutches of the Borough defence only to fire wide with the goal at his mercy.

Vine added the sixth with 13 minutes remaining as Gosport resumed their goal hunt.

Wooden was then left a little red-faced on 87 minutes.

Williams picked him out with a delightful defence-splitting pass but the former Moneyfields man managed to steer the ball wide of an open goal from less than two yards out.

The miss was irrelevant in the grand scheme of things, though, as Borough eased into the quarter-finals where they make the short trip to Sholing.

Furthermore, Pike’s troops had enjoyed excellent preparation ahead of their bid for a fifth consecutive league win at Margate on Saturday.

GOSPORT BOROUGH: Watch, Wheeler, Williams, Carter, Robinson, Woodford, Ryan, Harding, Wooden, Bennett, Barker. Subs: Vine, Dunford, Ramsey, Cuthbertson, Wilde.

COWES SPORTS: Icke, Draper, Conway, Bryan, Lewis, Scovell, Wilson, Sainsbury, Browne, Malin, McKie. Subs: Butt, Wright, Whykes, Ince, Hatt.

Referee: A Foster (Fareham)