Rovers progress in senior cup
Rovers made the short trip to local rivals Leighton Town for this midweek Beds Senior Cup tie. The starting line-up showed a number of changes including starts for keeper Gary Malone, Adam Watkins in midfield, Jonny Butler at the back and Jay Caines on the right wing.
The first half was dominated by Rovers and there were goalscoring chances aplenty after an early scare just three minutes in when Leighton struck a post with the ball rebounding to safety. Within the first quarter, Connor Vincent headed straight at Jones in the Leighton goal on 7 minutes, Caines shot wide when it looked easier to score, a Watkins pile-driver pulled a great save from Jones, Jimmy Hartley had a shot cleared off the line and Butler headed wide from a corner. Then Rovers paid a hefty price for those misses when Faulkner fired home to open Leighton's account after 25 minutes. The Rovers pressure never let up and finally captain Drew Phillips headed an equaliser from a rightwing cross just two minutes before half-time and the teams went in level.
That familiar early second half hoodoo struck once more for Rovers when, after some careless defending, Leighton's Dom Marsala was presented a gift which he gleefully pounced upon to put the home side ahead on 46minutes. This signalled a 10 minute spell when Leighton were on top and Faulkner might have increased their lead but for a Malone save. Rovers put their foot on the gas however and on 61 minutes Jay Caines popped up at the far post to smash home a superb left wing cross from Luke Warner-Eley to level the scores once more. Hartley then had a goal bound shot deflected onto the bar before , on 61 minutes, Sam Gibson opened his goalscoring account by putting Rovers ahead after a solo run and shot that beat Jones in the Leighton goal all ends up. Still time for a little 'argy-bargy' typical of local derbies when Warner-Eley and Birch of Leighton were yellow carded for a bout of 'handbags'. Rovers go into the hat for the next round draw and, thanks to the efforts by both teams, an entertaining evening was had by all.
Final Score: Leighton Town FC 2 (Faulkner 25, Marsala 46) Barton Rovers 3 (Phillips 43, Caines 61, Gibson 76)