Uppingham Town have completely turned their season around and on Saturday they demonstrated their new confidence when they came back to beat Deeping Rangers Reserves 5-3 at Tod’s Piece in the PDFL Premier Division.
That makes it eight games in a row unbeaten in the league, dating back to October, winning six of those to climb off the foot of the table.
Uppingham manager Billy Beaver said: “We are eight games unbeaten and we are very proud of that. We have been playing all the teams around the bottom of the league and we knew we had to take advantage to get some points but we have done.
“I think we are safe now [from relegation] but we don’t want the season to fizzle out. We have got some tough games coming up, Pinchbeck away and Peterborough Sports, and we have still got some things left to achieve. At the start of March we have got Ketton who embarrassed us earlier in the season [they won 8-1] so we want to go there and give a good account of ourselves.
With the howling wind behind them Deeping started very well, leaving the bar rattling before taking the lead in the fifth minute when Anthony Graves headed in a Connor Pilbeam cross.
The provider then turned scorer to give Rangers Reserves a 2-0 lead.
Martin Bennett scored before the break, finishing from a Rob Lawrie cross.
That was the end of the goal-scoring but not the significant action - just before the break Omar Elkashoty bumped into the already injured Rangers goalkeeper Robbie Virgin, who bravely committed to save from the Town attacker, but left him feeling the affects.
Virgin never fully recovered. Promising new signing Jordan Spencer had a speculative hit from range, which the keeper should have been able to walk across his goal and pick up, but instead he fell to the ground and the ball rolled in.
Virgin was quickly substituted, with Matt Atkins moving between the sticks.
However the first real shot he faced was simply unstoppable, Elkashoty’s blast going in off the post.
Will Thomas added a fourth before Elkashoty hit his second of the game and it could have been a lot more.
Uppingham weren’t done with the scoring, late in the match Danny Dumford put the ball in his own net when trying to deal with a cross by Dan Woods.
Beaver said he was maybe a bit harsh on his side at half time because they defended against the wind much better than the visitors and really put on the pressure after the break.
Uppingham are away to Sawtry on Saturday and Beaver says his side are travelling with a view to extending their record.
Uppingham Town: Tom Hubbard, Jonathan Forster, Matt Hill, Martin Bennett, Jamie Dumford, James Howe, Jordan Spencer, Rob Lawrie (Ryan Waller), Danny Dumford, Will Thomas (Cameron Cleaver), Omar Elkashoty. SUBS unused: Adam Binley.
Deeping Rangers Reserves: Robbie Virgin (Matt Reed), Ryan Lomas, Kier O’Sullivan, Matt Atkins, Matt Dennis, Ryan Bird, Dave Weston, Ant Garmory, Dan Woods, Anthony Graves and Connor Pilbeam.