REACTION | "The fans were outstanding"
Stuart Maynard thought his Wealdstone team and the crowd fed off each other last night as they pulled off one of the great results in the club's storied history.
Grimsby had only had lost one game this season and were starting to blaze a trail at the top of the National League, but the Stones produced a high-energy and all-action performance to knock them off their stride and record a thoroughly deserved 1-0 win in front of nearly 2,000 fans who made a crackling atmosphere at The Vale.
"The fans were outstanding," said Maynard. "I've said all long we need to make this place really loud and they were there for us when we needed to dig deep. We understand we need to give them something to shout about and I thought we did that tonight. They were great."
His team weren't bad, either. They were at it from the off and Paul Hurst's side quickly knew they were in for a tough evening. The Stones should have taken the lead from the spot but top-scorer Josh Umerah saw his penalty saved, but then the outstanding Matt Buse did give them a deserved lead with a long-range strike on 20 minutes.
"What a strike from Busey," said Maynard on the midfielder's first start since the opening day of the season. "I always said the team that starts the season isn't always the one that finishes it. Busey has been patient, bided his time, he turns up for training and gives it everything. We all need to be in it together and you saw that tonight."
Maynard had to use the full depth of his squad due to injuries to Connor Stevens, Alex Dyer, Rhys Browne, Charlie Cooper and Medy Elito, and the reshaped XI rolled up its sleeve and belied the difference in league positions and budget to pull off a stunning result.
"Grimsby had a lot of possession and have been in unbelievable form," said Maynard. "But I thought we started really well and dealt with their threats really well. I believe we are right up there in this league when it comes to the way we move the ball and retain possesion. I said to the players before the game we need to really want to score and really want to defend, to put your head in there and track the runners. I thought we did the business tonight in both boxes."
The pumped-up Stones are sadly without a game now until November 13 when they host Barnet in a crunch game at The Vale.
"We can recharge the batteries and get a few bodies back," said Maynard. "We've got time to prepare for the Barnet game and it's one to look forward to. It's a massive derby, with loads of history and we've got to get the place rocking. The lads will be giving everthing, as they have done all season."