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MATCH REPORT | Stones 3-3 Sutton United

Wealdstone produced a stunning comeback to share the spoils with Sutton United in a thoroughly entertaining match at The Vale this evening in front of the BT Sport cameras.

First half goals from Isaac Olaofe and Omar Bugiel put the U’s into a commanding lead at halftime; however, a second half brace from Ross Lafayette and strike from Jacob Mendy propelled the Stones on the brink of victory, but a 94th minute goal from Craig Eastmond rescued a draw for the visitors.

Manager Dean Brennan made one change to the side that lost to Eastleigh on Tuesday evening, with last season’s top goal scorer Ross Lafayette returning to the starting line-up for the Stones.

The U’s struck first blood within the first four minutes of the match as Olaofe was first to pounce in the box after a fantastic initial goal line save from Harry Isted, dispatching into the net from close range.

Wealdstone’s fortunes took a further blow seven minutes later as Isted’s clearance was closed down by Bugiel and deflected into an open net, doubling the visitors’ lead.

Sutton United proceeded to dominate the remainder of the first half, dictating possession and peppering the Stones’ goal with a string of goal scoring chances, but Isted produced some vital saves to preserve the score line.

In the second half, the Stones responded in fantastic fashion, reducing the deficit within a minute of the restart as Kundai Benyu swung in a teasing ball towards Danny Parish at the far post, who headed back across the goal for talisman Lafayette to nod home against his former club.

With their renewed impetus, intensity and cohesion, Wealdstone continued to probe for an equaliser and were duly rewarded for their persistence in the 66th minute as man of the match Lafayette converted past Dean Bouzanis for his brace.

In the 82nd minute, the U’s were close to resuming the lead, but Harry Beautyman’s headed effort rebounded off of the crossbar.

Wealdstone’s comeback was finally completed in the 88th minute as hotshot Mendy hit a trademark long range effort past Bouzanis to edge the contest and notch his third goal of the season.

The Stones looked like they would hold on to secure a brilliant victory, but Sutton United’s captain Craig Eastmond salvaged a draw at the death for the visitors, poking home from a corner in stoppage time.

Wealdstone reside in fourth place as they return to action on Friday 27th November, when they travel to Meadow Lane to face Notts County, in a 7:45pm kick off.

WEALDSTONE: Isted, Efete, Phillips, Okimo (c), Mendy, Smith, Green (Parrett 90), Emmanuel (Benyu 12), Parish (Wakefield 84), Lewis, Lafayette.

Subs not used: Askew, Cawley.

SUTTON UNITED: Bouzanis, Barden, Goodliffe, John, Milsom, Eastmond, Davis, Ajiboye, Beautyman, Olaofe (Kealy 79), Bugiel (Sho-Silva 69).

Subs not used: Wyatt, Dundas, Simpson.

Report by Nicole Cho-Yee


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