TWO GOALS inside three first-half minutes set Woodbridge Town on their way to winning this season’s CNet Training Suffolk Senior Cup.
A third with 12 minutes remaining ensured the favourites completed not only a 3-0 victory over Bungay Town at Portman Road on Friday night but a league and cup double.
Matt Mackenzie fired the Woodpeckers in front after 36 minutes and then Liam Scopes headed home the second two minutes later to put Woodbridge in control at the interval.
Bungay had their moments – indeed they felt hard done by when Sean Flint had an effort disallowed after Ash Canham’s drive crashed against the woodwork – but George Bowman’s goal sealed victory.
The Black Dogs suffered a big blow on the morning of the match when they lost an appeal against a sending off for Tom Hunter, their 17-year-old winger who had scored twice in the quarter-final and a hat-trick in the semi-final.
Bungay missed Hunter’s pace and energy in attack and it was left to Canham to provide their only real goal threat throughout the course of the 90 minutes.
Although Thurlow Nunn League Division One champions Woodbridge were deserved winners, Bungay, appearing in their first Senior Cup Final for 55 years, ensured they never ran away with it.
Woodbridge striker Mark Ray had the ball in the net after 16 minutes, but the goal was ruled out for a push by Scopes on goalkeeper Smith, who required lengthy treatment before being able to continue.
Smith beat away a shot from Mackenzie, who had been freed down the right by skipper Sean Rea on the half-hour, but could only parry Mackenzie’s rising drive into the roof of his net at his near post after a net one-two with Ryan Keeble.
Two minutes later Scopes was left completely unmarked inside the six-yard box at the back post to head firmly down and into the net from Bowman’s right-wing corner to double Woodbridge’s lead. Scopes (No.6) is pictured above heading home. Photograph courtesy of Paul Voller.
Canham forced Woodbridge keeper Alfie Stronge to tip over from 25 yards at the start of the second period, before Bungay skipper Shaun Whiteman produced a great block to thwart Keeble.
A curling free-kick from Canham on the left saw Stronge arch backwards to claw the ball to safety, before the striker then curled a free-kick wide of the upright.
Canham’s 75th minute cross-shot crashed against the far post and as the ball struck the prostrate Stronge, Flint reacted quickest to stab home from close range, but the assistant’s flag was raised for offside.
Former Ipswich Town captain Carlos Edwards had only been on the pitch a minute when he exchanged passes with Bowman, who miskicked in front of goal but recovered his composure to tuck home.
The cup and medals were presented by Ipswich Town’s caretaker manager Bryan Klug and Andrew Stevens of competition sponsors CNet Training.
Bungay Town: Jordan Smith, Jamie Weston (sub Sam Olley, 67 mins), Ryan Cook (sub Sean Flint, 60 mins), Tom Daniels, Craig Hunting, Shaun Whiteman, Dom Mirner, Brannon Solomon (sub Sam Wooldridge, 63 mins), Ash Canham, Josh Knights, John Riches. Unused subs: Brandon Ling, Mark Clay.
Woodbridge Town: Alfie Stronge, Sean Rea, Dale Hammond, George Bowman, Aaron Churchyard, Liam Scopes, Matt Mackenzie (sub Callum Sinclair, 71 mins), Taylor Southgate (sub Jake Green, 83 mins), Mark Ray, Alex Greggor (sub Carlos Edwards, 77 mins), Ryan Keeble. Unused subs: Ben Garnham, Baden Holmes.
Referee: Stuart Franklin.