Casselman’s hat-trick and Jones’ late save earn Bridges draw

Three Bridges U21s player Mitchell Casselman SUS-160404-164405002
Three Bridges U21s player Mitchell Casselman SUS-160404-164405002
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Mitchell Casselman scored a hat-trick and young goalkeeper Alfie Jones made an injury-time penalty save as Bridges gained a hard-earned draw with Peacehaven.

It was a game in which their academy youngsters took the limelight as they stepped in for several first team absentees.

Josh Marshall saw his shot go just wide as the visitors applied some pressure which resulted in them taking the lead after 35 minutes.

Another shot from Marshall rebounded off the cross-bar and was picked-up by Ezekiel Bademosi who rifled the ball into the net.

Bridges seemed rattled and were far too quiet and were urged to raise their game which they did as the first half came to an end.

In time added on, Casselman ran on to a long clearance and volleyed the ball into the top corner of the goal.

Within the first minute of the second-half, Andrew Dalhouse had a chance to put the visitors ahead again when clean through, but a last-ditch tackle by Jamie Crellin saved the day.

Mark Pulling had the same sort of chance minutes later at the other end, but he shot straight at the goalkeeper Ryan Burridge.

Bridges took the lead after 60 minutes, when Casselman completed his hat-trick as he collected a rebounding ball and scored from close range.

With many substitutions for both teams, it took a while for the game to settle down again.

Peacehaven were having the better period of play as chances fell to Alex Spinks and Richard Ismail but the finishing was poor.

The equaliser came in the 85th minute, when the excellent Marshall guided a free-kick around the ineffective defensive wall into the bottom corner of the goal.

With full-time approaching, both teams were frantic to get the winner but all to no avail as nobody seemed calm enough to take advantage of the chances.

The final twist to the game came in added-time when a penalty was awarded to the visitors for a dubious call of handball.

Peacehaven’s best player by far, Marshall took the penalty but stand-in goalkeeper, academy player Jones, moved low to his right and palmed the ball away.

The visitors showed signed of quality, despite already being relegated this season.

Bridges: Jones, Lansdale, Daniel (Godfrey 71), Sargent, Donaghey (capt), Crellin, Pulling, Adelakun, Touray, Casselman (Cooney 61), Whitehead (Newman-Knott 50), Unused sub: Wilson

Attendance: 79

Aerotron Man of the Match: Mitchell Cassellman