Royston Town crash to home defeat to St Ives
- Credit: Archant
An Easter weekend that began well with a 0-0 away draw with title-chasing Daventry Town ended on a sour note with a 4-1 home defeat to St Ives Town on Easter Monday.
It brought harsh viewing for the majority of the 187 people who turned up at Garden Walk hoping for a Royston win in their final home league game of the Calor Division One Central season.
The game did start brightly and in the third minute a diagonal run from Reece Dobson drew an early clumsy foul for Robbie Mason to power home the resulting spot-kick.
It was unfortunately all downhill from here. St Ives fashioned two half-chances and these early scares should have warned Crows boss Steve Castle of the misery to follow.
Lewis Endacott did make a good run and cross but Mason’s shot was well saved by Barney McLaughlin in the visitors’ goal.
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St Ives deservedly drew level on 32 minutes with a long ball being cleverly flicked on and Jon Stead’s shot was well directed and firmly hit.
And four minutes later an in-swinging corner from Avelino Vieira was powered home by a fine, unmarked diving header from St Ives man of the match Karl Gibbs.
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Ryan Ingrey was sent on for the second half as Cambridge, playing his first 45 minutes for many games, was removed and the formation was reverted to 4-4-1-1.
Ingrey was asked to play left midfield and this pushed holding midfielder Edwards to an unfamiliar right wing position. This new formation also took Dobson back a bit leaving Mason to lead the line.
The Crows’ chances on goal were few and far between - notably Edwards did have an early lively shot and Ingrey’s sharp turn and effort went just off target.
The visitors increased their lead on 57 minutes when a loose ball was not cleared and Will Fordham punished the sloppy defending.
Ryan Lockett replaced the visibly struggling Dobson on the hour mark.
The Crow’s despair was compounded as Jhai Dhillon saw a straight red card for being adjudged the last man in a clumsy tackle on Stead.
Castle chose to make his last change bringing on midfielder Spyros Mentis for skipper Collins but St Ives completed their afternoon’s work with a fourth goal on 85 minutes with Stead netting to the jubilation of the away fans.