TADLEY Calleva made it three wins on the trot as they beat visiting Ringwood 2-1 last Saturday in Syden-hams Wessex League Division One.
It moved the side up to eighth in the league – which a far cry from this time last year, when they only had two wins to their name.
Their latest success was well deserved after they opened the scoring on 20 minutes as a move involving Jason Kingston, James Milford and Danny Vickers saw Scott Kinge score.
Soon after, Kinge hit the post from 20 yards and leading scorer Jason Graham forced a double save.
But, with five minutes left in the half, Spencer Barlow was harshly penalised for a tackle from behind and Ringwood levelled from the penalty spot.
After the break, the game continued with Tadley on top and the referee hardly endeared himself to the home side and fans again on the hour mark.
Tadley were awarded a free-kick, Graham believed he had asked if he could take it quickly and it flew into the net – only for the goal to be disallowed and the referee tell him he should have waited for the whistle.
The tough tackling visitors not unsurprisingly had a player sent-off for lashing out at Les Wood, causing an injury which forced the Tadley player to be substituted.
The home side were not to be denied victory, however, as Vickers found Graham and he drilled a shot through the goalkeeper’s legs with 20 minutes to go.
On Tuesday night, Tadley made the long trip to the Isle of Wight to face high flying Cowes Sports. It meant an early afternoon start from north Hampshire to get to the game in time, so the visitors were only able to take 12 players.
That said they took the game to the home side and Vickers and Mario Nurse both went close in the first 45 minutes.
With 40 minutes to go they were reduced to 10 men as Kingston was sent-off for a high tackle which boss Dolan felt was an “awful” decision.
The manager said: “I really felt sorry for Jason as it was worth a yellow card, but never a straight red and it ruined the game.”
Despite that, Tadley battled on and Vickers scored. But Cowes threw everything at the visitors and, with five subs, were able to bring on fresh legs in the final five minutes.
They equalised – and scored the winner in injury-time, sending Cowes top above Team Solent.
Dolan said: “I am really proud of the 12 players that made the trip and I could not fault the performance.
“I think it was disrespectful of the league to send us to Cowes on Tuesday night, but if we had finished the game with 11 men, we would have got something out of the game.”
This Saturday Tadley will be without Matt Aslett – man-of-the-match against Ringwood – and Scott Kinge for the trip to lowly Amesbury, but Henry Johnson and Ed Hall return.