Mildenhall Town score goals in either half to chalk up victory at Thetford Town
In the battle of tonight's two sides looking to bounce back from Buildbase FA Vase exits at the weekend, it was Mildenhall Town who came out on top with a 2-0 victory at hosting Thetford Town.
Mildenhall were bright early on and so it was not the greatest of surprises when they broke the deadlock in just the fifth minute.
Charlie Hitch’s cross from the right was dummied by Dan Brown, presenting the chance for an advancing Phil Weavers to slot in from a narrowing angle.
It took a youthful Thetford side a little while to recover from the early setback, but once they did, they started to get a foothold on proceedings.
Joao Varela tested Josh Pope with a rising shot from distance in the 12th minute and the Mildenhall goalkeeper was called into action again seven minutes later to turn over an effort from Artur Visocanskis.
With the wind firmly in their sails, the Brecklanders started to dictate proceedings in possession, won the 50/50 battles and were first to the loose balls.
And yet, for all of their endeavour it was Mildenhall that created the better of the goalscoring chances before the half was out.
In the 35th minute Tanner Call saw his low effort deflect a yard wide of the post and the same player curled just past the opposite upright in stoppage time.
In-between those attempts Mildenhall centre-back Casey Phillips got up highest to meet Hitch’s left-wing corner, but his looping header landed on the roof of the net.
Another of those opportunities presented itself six minutes into the second half – and this time Call did not miss.
Thetford goalkeeper Macauley Rodgers’ kick was knocked forward by Mildenhall midfielder Tom Walters and Call scampered clear before showing good composure to lob the stranded home custodian.
It was a goal that seemed to knock the stuffing out of Thetford, and Mildenhall sensed blood.
They were twice left frustrated by the referee in quick succession, first for rejecting penalty appeals after Hitch appeared to have been felled by Marley Delgado inside the box. Soon after they had the ball in the net again through Call, but it was chalked off for a foul on Rodgers, although it certainly looked a soft decision.
In the 61st minute Brown dragged his shot from Call's lay-off wide, before Rodgers did well with his feet as the Mildenhall frontman went hunting a second goal of the night.
To Thetford's credit they then stemmed the tide to a degree and started to play in the Mildenhall half, but the visitors always looked a threat on the break, particularly with introduction of the pacey Ben Nolan and Natty Stewart.
It was Stewart that almost sealed the game with a third goal in the 84th minute, but Rodgers got across his line well to palm clear the forward's free kick.
After that it was all about being organised and disciplined from a Mildenhall perspective – something they did with minimal fuss to make it five clean sheets in as many Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division outings.
As for Thetford, they have now lost three in a row after previously putting together a seven-game unbeaten run.
Thetford: Rodgers, Bond, Cusack, Morton, Balment, Smith, Visocanskis (Cruz 85'), Mann, Varela, Vasileiou, Delgado (Campbell 71')
Mildenhall: Pope, Hitch, Coakley (Green 24'), Steed, Phillips, Butcher, Walters, Weavers, Chaplin (Nolan 69'), Call, Brown (Stewart 71')
Suffolk News Man of the Match – Tanner Call (Mildenhall): The striker work tirelessly, particularly when switched to the left flank during the second half. Got his goal and on another day could have had a couple more.