Yeovil Town's Under 18s side lost out narrowly to Exeter City Under 18s this morning in a nine goal thriller that saw the Glovers come inches away from clawing back a 1-4 deficit. Despite taking an early lead through a Joe Grimstead free kick they found themselves heading for a heavy defeat with four Exeter goals netted by the time the clock reached the hour mark. Goals from Tyler Sheppard and Robert Clowes got them back in the game only for Exeter to score again. Alex West's 85th minute goal, made for a tense finale, but Exeter took the game by a 5-4 scoreline.
The Glovers took the lead in the ninth minute, with a Joe Grimstead free kick giving them an early advantage. But the warning signs were there five minutes later when Exeter won themselves a spot kick, conceded by Robert Clowes for a handball offence. Thankfully Steve Boore made a great save to his left to keep Yeovil's early lead.
However, despite Yeovil hanging on for 35 minutes, Exeter took the game by the scruff of the neck in the final 10 minutes of the half, scoring three times before the break, with the first coming from the game's second penalty - Sam Ford this time the guilty party for a foul in the box.
Two half time substitutions, with Steve Harris coming off injured, tried to wrestle the game back, but Exeter scored their fourth of the game nine minutes into the second period, to seemingly put the match out of reach.
But the Glovers didn't give up, with Ciaran Levet putting in plenty of second half crosses to put pressure on the Exeter back line. Substitute Tyler Sheppard volleyed home with 20 minutes left to bring the scores back to 2-4 following a great team move. Five minutes later it was 'game on' as Robert Clowes followed up his own attempt that was parried by the Exeter keeper, with Clowes making no mistake from the loose ball.
Robert Clowes could have provided an equalising goal with 11 minutes left, when the third penalty of the match was awarded, but his attempt went wide of the right post. And Exeter provided full punishment with the best of the nine goals of the afternoon - a long range left-foot curler that gave Steve Boore no chance.
Substitute Alex West set up an exciting last five minutes by netting the ninth goal of the game but in the end an improved second half performance could not grab an improbable point. Too many sloppy first half chances undid Yeovil before they reached the break and it wasn't until they tightened up that they looked a stronger side. Robert Clowes had a great game despite his missed penalty, whilst Tyler Sheppard and Ciaran Levet did well in the second half. The other positive was the return of defender Rhys Baggridge, who has had a long lay-off due to a broken foot. His comeback from injury today should benefit the Glovers in the long run as he attempts to regain full fitness.
Final Score: Yeovil Town Under 18s 4 Exeter City Under 18s 5.
Scorers: Joe Grimstead (1-0, 9 mins), Exeter (1-1, 35 mins), Exeter (1-2, 38 mins), Exeter (1-3, 45 mins), Exeter (1-4, 54 mins), Tyler Sheppard (2-4, 70 mins), Robert Clowes (3-4, 75 mins), Exeter (3-5, 83 mins), Alex West (4-5, 85 mins).
Yeovil Town Under 18s: (3-4-3)
Sam Ford, Tom Scott, Steve Harris
Joe Grimstead, Charlie Elseworth, Tom Gallagher, Johnny Oliver
Ciaran Levet, Adam Wakley, Robert Clowes
Rhys Baggridge (46 mins for Steve Harris), Lewis Clarke, Tyler Sheppard (46 mins for Charlie Elsworth), Alex West (80 mins for Johnny Oliver), Alex Sprake.
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