DORCHESTER TOWN 1 ST IVES TOWN 1 Dorchester were denied a third successive home win when Josh Dawkin’s 85th-minute strike levelled the scores at the Avenue last night.
The hosts had opened the scoring 10 minutes into the second half when Liam McDevitt turned Ollie Bassett’s left-wing corner into his own net. Player-boss Mark Jermyn was waiting on the sidelines to make a brief but significant appearance as a late substitute – his 700th outing for the county town club but could only watch in anguish as Dawkin cut in from the left wing to drill a low shot from the edge of the penalty area past a seemingly wrong-footed Shane Murphy in the home goal. Jermyn nearly restored Dorchester’s lead but his 20-yard drive flew just over. There were few clear-cut chances in a goalless first half. A fourth minute free-kick from Lewis Morgan was easily cut out by visiting keeper, Tim Trebes. A good run by Morgan Penfold ended with a shot from the edge of the area which was blocked by Nathan Walker who was named captain in the absence of the suspended Jake Smeeton. A cross from Tom Blair on the left wing sailed over the St Ives defence to Bassett whose far post drive cleared the crossbar. Trebes then saved a low shot and a free-kick from David Jerrard before a centre from Morgan bounced just past the far post. Matt Oldring sent a firm header over from Ben Wood’s cross while Trebes again positioned himself well to cut out a Bassett free-kick. Jermyn switched Walker from defensive duties into attack at the start of the second half with Joe Lea also replacing Jerrard. But the next chance fell to the visitors as Dubi Ogbonna saw his near post overhead kick saved by Murphy. Dorchester hit back strongly and a cross from Brookes reached Walker whose strong downward header was clawed aside by the diving Trebes. Almost immediately another Brookes’ centre was met by Walker whose header this time was pushed over the crossbar by Trebes. And it was from Bassett’s corner kick taken from the left wing, that the incoming McDevitt turned the ball into the roof of his own net to gift Dorchester a 55th-minute lead. St Ives nearly equalised straight away as Jared Cunniff raced into the Dorchester half before passing the ball aside to Dawkin but his shot was hacked off the line by Brookes. There was another half chance for Dorchester when Blair’s cross found Morgan whose shot was blocked while at the other end a low drive from Tom McGowan deflected wide for what proved to be a fruitless corner. Morgan sent a 20-yard effort wide while after some good work in midfield by Bassett initially, Blair broke forward only to fire over from 30 yards. Dorchester were not looking in too much danger of losing their slender advantage and continued to create chances to seal victory. A cross from Lea just eluded Walker while Martin sent a free-kick into the arms of Trebes. A set-piece from Jack Bradshaw appeared to bounce off Murphy to safety while a snatched shot from Ogbonna flew wide as St Ives continued to hunt for some reward for their long mid-week trek. And that reward duly came with five minutes left on the clock as Dawkin seized the initiative to equalise with an individual goal from the edge of the box which left Murphy rooted to the spot. Seconds later, Jermyn replaced Brookes to deserved applause for a notable achievement but this was not the memory he would have wanted from his 700th appearance. Walker and Jermyn both had late chances but St Ives held on for their point.