Byron Mason 37

IT was a case of the same old story at the Bob Lucas Stadium last night as the Terras slipped out of the Red Insure League Cup at the hands of Evo-Stik Division One South & West outfit Sholing Sports.

A small gathering of 127 turned out for the preliminary round tie but once again the home fans were left frustrated by another disappointing display.

Weymouth boss Brendon King included the likes of Tom Manley, Ben Gerring, Byron Napper, Sam Malsom and top-scorer Warren Byerley in his line-up but after flattering to deceive in the first 25 minutes their recent inadequacies soon came back to the fore.

Ryan McKechnie and Mitch Conning were also handed starts and the latter looked Weymouth’s liveliest player in the opening exchanges.

However, it was Sports that created the first sight of goal on seven minutes when Barry Mason outstripped Scott Dixon on the right, only to blaze his effort over the bar from just inside the box.

The Terras immediately responded with a couple of neat interchanges in the final third but they were still struggling to distribute the ball effectively from the back, causing their play to be somewhat disjointed.

When they did gain possession in attacking areas they looked dangerous and on 19 minutes they went close to breaking the deadlock when Napper saw a 25-yard drive pushed around a post by visiting keeper Lee Webber.

It appeared the home side were beginning to grow in confidence and moments later they went even closer when Craig Duff drove into the box and fired in a cross to Conning, whose instinctive effort was stopped by a point-blank save.

However, King’s men still looked tentative at the back and on 29 minutes they nearly paid the price when Nicky Watts delivered a fine cross to Byron Mason, whose shot on the swivel was well saved by Manley.

Watts was clearly beginning to cause problems and five minutes later he easily skipped past a couple of defenders before testing Manley again, who made another smart save before turning Barry Mason’s follow up over the bar.

Sholing were not cutting through the Terras’ defence at will and on 37 minutes they finally got the goal they deserved when Barry Mason’s cross took a lucky ricochet and landed at the feet of Byron Mason, who slotted the ball into the left corner of the net.

The goalscorer went on to have another decent effort saved moments later before a fabulous cross-field ball from Barry Mason set up a great chance for Watts at the far post but he blazed high and wide to the relief of the home fans.

The Terras showed a lot more endeavour after the break but despite camping out in the visitors’ half their attacks kept breaking down at the crucial moment.

Duff blazed over from 20 yards on 69 minutes but that was all the hosts could muster before Barry Mason went close to grabbing a killer second when he shot over from an acute angle after Manley had parried a cross from substitute Craig Stanley.

Weymouth continued to battle and with six minutes remaining their sheer persistence was nearly rewarded when Conning’s cross from the right saw Byerley stab an effort agonisingly wide of the far post. Duff then took an exaggerated fall in the box prompting desperate appeals for a penalty before McKechnie prodded a shot against the outside of a post in added-time as Sholing hung on to secure a home tie against Wimborne Town in the next round.

Terras: Manley, Murray, Dixon, Gerring, Poole, Napper, Duff, Conning, Malsom (Marshallsay 52), Byerley, McKechnie. Subs not used: Jarvis, Groves, Lane.

Sholing: Webber, Brewster, Diaper, Camfield, Marden, Carter, McCarthy (Bright 71), Austin, By Mason (Miller 80), Ba Mason, Watts (Stanley 69). Sub not used: Hookway. Bookings: Terras – None. Sholing – None.

Attendance: 127