UNIVERSITY OF YORK 2
UNIVERSITY OF SHEFFIELD 0
A second half goal from Henry Meller was crucial for York as they managed to overcome Sheffield’s seconds team by two goals to nil. The performance from the home side was not exactly vintage but was enough to secure three points and stop the rot of three losses in a row.
York were quick out of the blocks and spent the opening few minutes in Sheffield’s half. Calls and instructions were being shouted from all over the pitch and that contributed to a number of good passes being dispatched to the target effectively.
While they were good at moving the ball into the end quarter of the pitch – George Richards was particularly effective, coming up from deep and initiating a number of movements from the right wing – York seemed to almost trip over themselves when it really mattered: a lack of precision around the D denying them any obvious chances at goal.
Sheffield, not to be left behind, looked to use speed in the counter-attack as their main weapon. And it was quite effective for their forward had probably the first clear-cut opportunity of the game when a reverse shot was sent just wide of the goal.
It took an inspired play from Oliver Wheatley to break the deadlock. Picking up a pass on the edge of the D it looked as if the ball was glued to his stick as he weaved his way past one, two, three Sheffield players before passing it to Adam Tyrell who coolly sent it beyond the Sheffield goalkeeper.
Tyrell could have made it two not long after when he found himself in a similar spot in the D, but his close range effort was hit agonisingly wide of the target. Although York enjoyed the majority of possession the first half was a relatively even encounter and the home side could not afford to be complacent heading into the second.
A Sheffield short corner saw York put on the back foot at the beginning of the second half. But a whiffed strike meant danger was averted and it was Sheffield who were then in retreat. A fine interception was made by Kris Siva, his pass eventually reaching captain Andy Harris. Harris swivelled and turned but his final ball into the D was sent out of play by a Sheffield stick.
Images: Katie Davis
Just as York seemed to be finding their rhythm, however, a Sheffield attack almost threatened to break the run of the game. It took a crucial block from Richards to send the ball out of play and prevent a one-on-one between the visitors’ forward and the York goalkeeper. Following this their rather aptly named forward ‘Achilles’ gave Sam Harriman his first test of the second half but the man in goal dealt with the effort easily.
Once York regained possession they looked by far the more threatening. Henry Meller made a meandering run into the Sheffield D that brought a short corner. The venomous strike unleashed by Laurie Torrington was heading for the net before a brilliant diving save from the Sheffield goalkeeper pushed it just wide.
With York keeping the pressure on, Sheffield were forced to resort to a number of aerial balls which meant possession was given away regularly. With the opponents running out of ideas York attacked. Torrington’s long pass was met with a flick from Kris Siva that hit the post. Siva continued to cause havoc for the Sheffield defence when another effort barely missed. The chances kept coming for York but they were not functioning as a tight, impenetrable force.
That’s why Mellor’s goal was so important. He positioned himself perfectly in the D and was able to use the space he had created to fashion a shot that found the back of the net. At one goal down Sheffield looked like they might sneak an equaliser. At two down they had no hope.
While not York’s best performance it will go down as a victory and give them a boost heading into their match against bottom-placed Durham fourths next week.