Last-gasp strike in seven-goal thriller ends Exmouth Town FC’s 22-game home league unbeaten run

Exmouth Town Football Club’s unbeaten home league record stretching back to December 26, 2018, was cruelly snatched from them when they lost 4-3 to Shepton Mallet.

It was Town’s first game back following their enforced 18-day absence due to Covid-19, writes John Dibsdall.

Their inactivity clearly showed in the opening minutes as the visitors dominated and missed three good goalscoring opportunities.

As Town gradually gained a presence, Ace High shot into the side-netting and Aarron Denny’s individual trickery forced a good save from the ‘keeper, who then denied a Tom Gardner header.

The goal that Town’s pressure deserved came a minute before half-time when an excellent High cross caused confusion and resulted in an own goal.

The Mallet started the second half strongly and hit the underside of the bar following a series of corners and free kicks.

The first turning point came on 60 minutes when Jordan Harris was shown a yellow card for an innocuous challenge and was then sent to the sin bin when he questioned the decision.

During his 10-minute absence, the visitors continued to press forward and equalised on 68 minutes when Gardner turned a cross into his own net.

Two minutes later and and Town were behind despite offside appeals.

On 71 minutes, an excellent free-flowing move was finished in style and the Mallet had added a third.

Six minutes from the end of the regulation 90, Ben Steer struck a fine shot into the corner and a fightback was on.

Going well into added time, a free-kick from Town caused another goalmouth scramble resulting in the ball being deflected into the net.

Town looked to have preserved their record, but from the kick-off the ball was played forward.

And despite more offside appeals, an opposition player raced through on goal to hammer the final nail in Town’s previous 22-game unbeaten run.

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