WALKER HEADS FIFTH STRAIGHT WIN

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Aberystwyth’s Declan Walker wins the ball against Bala

DECLAN Walker’s dramatic injury-time header secured Aberystwyth Town’s fifth straight JD Welsh Premier League victory in a thrilling 3-2 win over Bala Town at Maes Tegid.

Cambrian News reported “The hosts had taken an interval lead through Steven Tames, but Aber turned the game with goals from sub Geoff Kellaway and Ash Ruane around the hour.

Tames got Bala back on level terms once more, but Rio Ahmadi chipped an inch-perfect cross to the back post where Declan Walker powered home a 93rd minute header to snatch the points.

There were three changes to the Seasiders’ starting line-up that had won at Cardiff Met, with Alan Goodall, Paulo Mendes and Ash Ruane replacing Lee Jenkins, Geoff Kellaway and Rio Ahmadi.

Neither side was able to stamp their authority in the opening stages of the game, but Aber created their first opening when Mathew Jones’ whipped corner kick was headed wide by skipper Declan Walker.

At the other end, keeper Terry McCormick tipped Henry Jones’ corner around the post, and Jones also struck the post, but Steven Tames did give Bala the lead on 28 minutes when he converted Evan Horwood’s free kick at the back post.

The visitors struggled to find their usual creativity in the final third of the pitch, as Ryan Edwards tried his luck from range but saw his effort fly over the crossbar.

On the stroke of half time, however, Aber went close to finding an equaliser as Paulo Mendes flicked the ball on for Ash Ruane, who saw his header bounce just wide of the post, and the hosts could enter the break with a slender advantage.

At half-time, Aber boss Nev Powell and assistant Gavin Allen opted for a change in formation as Ahmadi replaced Mendes to play through the middle with Ruane.

There was an instant improvement from the Seasiders as they began to force the play with increased tempo and intensity. On 53 minutes, Ruane darted into the penalty area before seeing his dangerous cross well cleared by Danny Gossett.

Soon after, the visitors made their second substitution as Geoff Kellaway replaced Joe Phillips, and the Aber wingman was soon in the thick of the action.

In the 58th minute, Steff Edwards surged down the left flank before curling an inviting ball into the penalty area, where Kellaway was waiting at the back post to volley home and make it 1-1.

Within six minutes the Seasiders took the lead as Wes Baynes swung in a right footed free kick towards Ruane, who looped a brilliant header over Bala ‘keeper Morris and into the far corner for 1-2.

The hosts began to bombard Terry McCormick’s box with long balls and throw ins, and on 77 minutes, Bala’s sustained pressure told as Mike Hayes played in Keiran Smith, whose low cross found it’s way to the back post, where Tames was on hand once more to tap home for 2-2.

The Seasiders could easily have sat back and held on for a creditable point, but instead they continued to press forward with plenty of courage and purpose.

Henry Jones failed to convert a good opportunity for the hosts on 86 minutes, as his header bounced wide of the post, and the fourth official then indicated a minimum of four minutes added time.

In the third of those four minutes, Ahmadi held the ball up superbly in the channel before skipping beyond Stuart Jones. The Aber number nine surged into the penalty area, before teeing up an inch perfect cross to the back post where Walker rose highest to power the ball into the net and send the away supporters into raptures with another 3-2 away win.

BALA TOWN: A Morris, A Burns, S Smith, S J Jones, S Jones, N Burke, E Horwood (K Smith 46’), C Venables, D Gosset (M Hayes 67’), S Tames, H Jones. Subs not used: I Sheridan, A Miley, V Charles (gk), J Jones, J Edwards.

ABERYSTWYTH: T McCormick, W Baynes (J Rimmer 90’), S Edwards, A Goodall, R Wollacott, P Mendes (P Ahmadi 56’), D Walker, R Edwards, M Jones, A Ruane, J Phillips (G Kellaway 56’). Subs not used: L Jenkins, N Blake, H Rowe, C Morgan.

Attendance: 309. Referee: Rob Jenkins” here.

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