HAMPSHIRE Premier League leaders Overton United warmed up for this weekend’s Hampshire Intermediate Cup semi-final with a 2-1 victory away at AFC Stoneham on Saturday.
With several people missing, manager Titch Bloomfield was forced to field players in unfamiliar positions, but Overton started the game well and took the lead on 25 minutes.
James Jupp’s through-ball put Chris Lavisher in the clear and he rounded the goalkeeper to put his side 1-0 up, a lead they retained until half-time, defending strongly to repel a string of corners.
Stoneham started the second half well but Overton were able to weather the storm and doubled their lead on the hour.
Dave Parry’s free-kick forced an excellent save out of the home goalkeeper but the ball was only cleared to the edge of the area and centre-back Henry Salmon fired in an excellent shot that found the top corner of the net.
Lavisher almost made the game safe minutes later, but his chip bounced up against the crossbar and Stoneham pulled a goal back on 67 minutes to set up a nervous ending to the game.
The hosts pressed but Overton defended well and had chances to extend their lead, Lavisher, Chris Morris and Jordan Grant all going close.
Bloomfield said: “It was a good win. We did not play to our full potential but there is a great resilience about us at the moment.
“We rolled our sleeves up and deserved the win. We showed plenty of character and are going really well at the moment.”
Next up for Overton is a home Hampshire Intermediate Cup semi-final against Southampton Saturday League side Cadnam United on Saturday.
“It’s the biggest game in years for the club,” Bloomfield added. “It will be a tough game and we will not be taking them lightly but if we play the way we can then there is no reason why we shouldn’t progress to the final.”