Another Saved Penalty As Lightning Strikes Twice
With a penalty in the first half the best opportunity for The New Saints, it was another groundhog day experience, as once more, Ashley Morris dived to his right and saved.
In our last encounter, again while the scores were level, he did the same against Dean Ebbe. This time round it was Danny Redmond’s turn to suffer an identical fate.
With another game against the Lakesiders on the horizon, surely lightning will not strike for the third time? This is one sequence that Scott Ruscoe’s side will be glad to put behind them.
Falling Behind, It’s All About How You Respond
As far as the missed penalty save was concerned, it went from bad to worse because in the second half, Bala Town took the lead. The mark of a good side though is not so much about going behind but rather how do you respond if you do.
The answer was almost immediate, as Ryan Brobbel found the net to level the score, as The New Saints then went on to dominate proceedings and take the three points.
Ryan Brobbel, What A Great Season He’s Having
Another brace from TNS’ Northern Ireland U21 international, saw not only the home team draw level but then edge their noses in front. The first was from an impressive free-kick that took a deflection, the second was an equally excellent effort as he took his tally of league goals to an anything but unlucky 13.
Brobbel has been having an excellent season and surely must be a contender to follow in Jamie Mullan’s footsteps as the JD Welsh Premier League Player Of The Season.
Greg Draper, Super Sub
He won’t seek the title of course, because every player wants to be in the starting line-up. However, super sub Greg Draper added TNS’ third goal to take him back to the top of the leading goalscorers table. Going into the weekend on level goals with Carmarthen Town’s Liam Thomas, the Old Gold’s 1-0 defeat against Cardiff Metropolitan University FC, means that Draper is again at the head of the pack, as he looks to retain his JD Welsh Premier League Golden Boot title.
Back On Top, With A Game In Hand
Although it’s great for the aforementioned Brobbel and Draper, ultimately it’s a team game and the biggest talking point is that The New Saints is back on top of the table. Not only is there a one-point advantage over Connah’s Quay Nomads but there is also a game in hand, plus of course a massive goal difference advantage, should that factor come into play.
Although Barry Town United are still mathematically in with a chance, it is looking very much like a two-horse race as we enter the final furlong of the league season.
TNS FC’s game in hand is on Wednesday, April 3, against Bala Town. They’re all massive games now – and have been so for some time – but a victory in that would most certainly put the reigning champions well and truly in the driving seat.
However, no-one at the club is getting carried away and before we begin our April fixtures we still have a March one to play. Next up for The New Saints is a visit to Latham Park, on Saturday, March 30, to play Barry Town United in the JD Welsh Cup semi-final.
Lead image: Courtesy of Brian Jones.