Taunton Academy Continues a Fabulous Start to the Season 

Match reports by Mr Mason

Pyrland School football teams continue to be unbeaten in all years and in all competitions, having completed another round of fixtures in the past two weeks. The Year 8s followed up a fantastic 5-3 victory over Swanmead in the National Cup with another 5-2 win this week against Dawlish Community College.

It was a fabulous team display with the boys leaving the traps early to establish a 4-0 half time lead. Credit must lie with the academy midfield which pushed, harried and created problems for the Devonian midfield and never let them play. In turn in possession, it was if they wielded creative wands as paid up members of Gryffindor in continually unlocking the Dawlish defensive door and finding space to impose themselves continually on the game.

The second half saw a closer affair with the Dawlish boys finding their feet as academy bodies tired and two quick goals led to anxious moments and nervous tummies amongst the management team and academy players alike. It was in that moment that resilience was found and grit and determination to not lie down and lose, a rallying call from Eddy and the boys were galvanised once more to collectively push to see the job done. A fifth goal followed, and calmness restored to see the boys to the final whistle and a 4th round tie against Cornish opposition to follow.

Having watched the Year 8s push to the next round it was the turn of the Year 10s to fly the academy flag. Their opposition was Sidcot School. The boys were confident following a penalty shoot out victory against Writhlington in the County Cup which had certainly broadened their shoulders and inflated their chests in the confidence stakes. This was echoed in front of a 200+ crowd at Fortress Academy when they established a 3-0 lead in the first 20 minutes.

There were jubilant scenes on the terraces and perhaps an over confidence on the pitch and a period of play where we forgot our footballing principles and lost all shape resulting in the Sidcot team scoring three goals and establishing a firm grip in the game. Mason and Saddington were forced to reassess tactics and new instructions were bellowed. The defence must regain its shape and display Rorkes Drift like resilience to not break again and allow the Sidcot hordes to breach our defences again. The boys stepped up to the plate and control was regained.

Our attacking play found its fluency again and two further goals were scored to settle what nerves may have started to appear. With five minutes to go it was imperative that we did not concede again and set up another tense finish. With three to go, a penalty to Sidcot and disbelief grew amongst the boys, would the Writhlington experience be repeated? The penalty taken but saved by Lawson, hysteria took hold, and our heads weren’t clear when the Sidcot striker buried the resulting corner to make it 5-4. We don’t do things easy! Thankfully we saw the last two minutes out to make it to the last 16 and one of only two teams left in the south west in this national competition. We look forward to seeing what the next round brings.

Results : 

Year 8 : National Cup Round 2 : Taunton Academy 5  Swanmead 4 

Year 8 National Cup Round 3 : Taunton Academy 5 Dawlish Community College 2 

Year 10 County Cup Round 2 : Taunton Academy 4  Writhlington 4  ( Academy win in sudden death penalties) 

Year 10 National Cup Round 3 : Taunton Academy 5  Sidcot  4 

Year 11 County Cup Round 3 : Taunton Academy 2 Beecham Cliff 0