Westgarth’s Buckland (A) reaction

Boss Andrew Westgarth felt a tight game was decided by two moments as his Falmouth Town side were beaten 2-0 at Buckland Athletic in the Western League on Tuesday night.

Town fell behind midway through the first half at Homers Heath when stand-in goalkeeper Morgan Coxhead’s – who stepped in for the injured Ryan Barnes – throw out was intercepted, with Cieran Bridger eventually crossing for Jared Lewington to nod in.

The hosts doubled their lead shortly before half-time in superb fashion, with Lewington receiving the ball on the edge of the box before flicking it up and volleying it into the top corner with Coxhead beaten all ends up.

Town had a couple of opportunities throughout the second half, with Olly Walker being denied by Bucks gloveman Andy Collings before substitute Jacob Rowe had his effort disallowed as the visitors slumped to only their second league defeat since the end of September.

Despite the result, Westgarth, who also paid tribute to the intrepid band of roughly 35 members of the F-Troop that joined the team in Devon on a freezing Tuesday night, sought solace in an improved second-half showing.

“It’s a tough place to go and their home record is pretty good so we knew it was going to be a tough game, but we gave ourselves a bit of a mountain to climb really,” Westgarth said. 

“I wouldn’t say there was a lot in it in the first 20 minutes, it was a bit of a cagey game, and then the game swung on a mistake from our point of view for the first goal and then a moment of magic from Lewington, he scored an absolute screamer to be fair to him, you’ve got to give credit where it’s due.

“I wouldn’t say we were terrible in the first half but we weren’t really at the races, and then in the second half I thought we were really good. I wouldn’t say either ‘keeper was troubled for large periods of the game, it was quite a tight game which you’d probably expect, but it was decided on two moments: probably a mistake and a moment of magic.”

He added: “Olly Walker’s had a big chance just before half-time which the ‘keeper’s saved, and if that goes in it’s 2-1 and a slightly different team talk, but I’ve got to give the boys credit in the second half. You are mindful in the back of your mind that if you fall to pieces it could be three or four – it wasn’t that sort of game but you are mindful of that, but I thought the lads [played well].”

Jacob Rowe made his first appearance for Town as a 60th-minute substitute after being drafted into the side in the absence of regular forward Luke Brabyn.

The prolific frontman has scored 23 goals in 17 games for South West Peninsula League Premier West sides Wadebridge Town (13 in 9) and St Dennis (10 in 8) this term, and came close to scoring his first for Falmouth on Tuesday, only to see his effort ruled out.

“It was one of those ones where you knew the referee was going to blow for a foul before he even blew for it,” Westgarth said. “On another day that could have been given as a goal and he could have marked his debut with a goal.

“He was a good addition, he put himself about and was a real handful.”