Dartford 0-2 Torquay United
Dartford 0-2 Torquay United

After an even first half, Torquay United had too much for a hard working Dartford side.

Liam Davis had the first half chance for the visitors when meeting a deep cross but it came awkwardly and he couldn’t get a clean shot away.

At the other end Ben Greenhalgh sent Kudus Oyenuga in behind but as Alex Bass advanced he shot across the face of goal.

End to end football followed and Jake Andrews had a shot for Torquay that had no power then at the other end Dan Darbyshire on debut shot straight at the goalkeeper.

Andrews was again unable to get a shot away when he looked to be in then Andre Coker had a shot blocked from Darbyshire’s cross and Lee Noble followed up with a wild shot.

Coker looked sure to score with a header but Kyle Cameron cleared off the line with an unbelievable headed clearance. Dartford had two follow up shots that were both blocked and the chance was gone.

Oyenuga broke down the wing and cut in but shot into the side netting before Dartford goalkeeper Bailey Vose made an excellent save from a close range Cameron header.

Ruairi Keaton then found himself in the zone from a near post corner but could only plant his header onto the roof of the net.

Darbyshire was then allowed a free run at goal but he was unable to find the target with his low drive. Once more, Oyenuga’s pace got him clear of the Torquay back four but again he chose to shoot from a poor angle, rather than looking for a team mate in the middle, and his shot went into the side netting.

Connor Lemonheigh-Evans fired wide from twenty-five yards for Torquay before Vose turned a Keating shot round the post in first half injury time.

After the interval, Torquay came out with greater intent and Dartford had to dig in. The Darts struggled to clear an attack until Daniel Johnson’s header hit Keaton and went wide.

It wasn’t all one way though and Ben Greenhalgh had an opportunity when he cut in but shot wide.

Jamie Reid came close to breaking the deadlock when his shot hit the post but with twenty minutes remaining, Torquay did open the scoring. A long ball from the left found Keating in space and he unleashed a fierce volley that took a slight deflection into the roof of the net.

Lemonheigh-Evans shot wide for the Gulls and Jamie Philpot did likewise for Dartford.

Finishing strongly, Keaton shot over from a good position then Reid had a low shot saved comfortably by Vose. Three minutes remained when Torquay ended the contest and it was in-form striker Reid that scored the winner with a fierce low drive.

That took the Gulls to the top of the league ahead of their match with the team that they deposed, Welling United.

Meanwhile Dartford were left to reflect on what might have been had they taken some of their first half chances.

 

Dartford: Vose, Onyemah, Johnson, Wynter, Vint, Bonner, Greenhalgh, Noble, Oyenuga (Hayes 80), Darbyshire (Philpot 69), Coker.

Subs not used: Fisher, Nicholls, Gillies.

 

Torquay United: Bass, Wynter (Sendles-White 89), Davis, Andrews (Hall 86), Koue-Niate, Cameron, Keating, Lemonheigh-Evans, Reid, Janneh, Kalala (Dickson 86).

Subs not used: Macdonald, Williams.

 

Dartford:

Goalscorers: None

Yellow cards: Bonner, Wynter, Oyenuga

Red cards: None

 

Torquay United:

Goalscorers: Keaton (70), Reid (87)

Yellow cards: Davis

Red cards: None

 

Referee: Steven Hughes

Assistants: Jack Willmore and Steven Scott

 

Attendance: 917

 

Dartford star player: Lee Noble

Pictures supplied by Dave Budden.

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