Weymouth (1) 1 Bath City (3) 5 – Tuesday 7 November 2023 – Vanarama National League South – Bob Lucas Stadium
Match Report by Mark Stillman.
Scintillating Bath City recorded their biggest away league win under Jerry Gill against a sorry Weymouth outfit on Tuesday night.
The Terras were pulverised in a one-sided contest at the Bob Lucas Stadium with Elliott Frear (2), Scott Wilson, Jordan Thomas and ex-Weymouth forward Cody Cooke dishing out the punishment.
Ben Thomson had momentarily halved the deficit for the hosts but they were well beaten in front of an understandably furious home support.
Weymouth also ended with 10 men after Calvin Brooks’ senseless second caution on 78 minutes.
Frear and Cooke were recalled in place of Ewan Clark and Tom Smith and their fresh legs proved the difference during a lively start.
Cooke had a goal disallowed for offside on 10 minutes but he had a hand in the opener six minutes later.
Will Buse’s long goal-kick was fended by Cooke to Dan Hayfield, who quickly found Frear in space wide of the penalty area.
The midfielder set himself before expertly drilling low and across Jared Thompson for his first goal since February.
City’s lead was doubled just past the half hour.
After Thomas’ teasing cross to the back post was glanced goalwards by Hayfield, Thompson could only parry to Wilson who prodded in from an acute angle past the outstretched keeper.
The home side had offered precious little but mustered a goal back when Thomson’s looping effort from 20 yards took a nick off Kieran Parselle and clipped the underside of the bar before creeping just over the line past the helpless Buse.
Their hope lasted all of 83 seconds. A throw-in by Jordan Dyer saw Wilson lay it back to Thomas just outside the box, he cut inside of David Sesay and Olu Durojaiye before effortlessly steering into the bottom corner from 12 yards to restore the two-goal advantage – a third goal in a breathless six minutes.
Weymouth showed some character after the break where Brandon Goodship’s low free-kick forced Buse into a smart reflex save on 50 minutes.
Soon after City found themselves in behind the home backline with ease. Luke Russe’s intelligent ball over the top saw Hayfield dart through and round Thompson before going to ground from Brooks’ challenge when attempting to poke into the empty net.
No penalty was awarded but the referee was in City’s good books for the fourth on the hour.
Russe was nastily shoved near the touchline by Tom Bearwish in playing the ball down the right flank but referee Read played advantage which allowed Wilson to pull back from the byline to Frear, who had time to control and plant the ball into the bottom right corner past an unsighted Thompson.
Further misery was heaped on the hosts on 78 minutes when Brooks decided the only way to stop Thomas’ latest foray forward was to pull him back in his own half, and having already picked up a caution before the interval his evening was over.
City strolled through the closing stages and added a fifth just as the clock hit 90.
Clark and Hayfield combined to set Thomas away down the right, his lay-off for substitute Chris Lines preceded an inch-perfect delivery to the back post where Cooke rose highest to gleefully nod in past his former employers and wrap up a comprehensive victory.
City’s Line-Up: Buse, Greenslade, Dyer (Raynes HT), Batten, Parselle (c), Hayfield, Cooke, Frear (Clark 72), Thomas, Wilson (Lines 78), Russe. Subs not used: Smith, Morgan.
Scorers: City – Frear (16, 59), Wilson (31), Thomas (36), Cooke (90); Weymouth – Thompson (34)
City Bookings – Cooke (25), Wilson (77)
Officials: S Read, B Walker, M Terry