20th November 2023

The Glovers’ impressive run of 14 consecutive wins and 15 unbeaten matches in all competitions came to an end after a 2-1 defeat against Torquay United in the Isuzu FA Trophy Second Round. Mark Cooper made multiple changes to the side that beat Farnborough 4-2 at Huish Park during the week as he looked to rest key players, with the Glovers not in league action.

With the changes that were made, Torquay took the lead very soon after kick-off. Dillon De Silva found himself in space on the right following a cross-field ball before driving into the box. He drilled the ball beyond Joe Day and into the bottom corner.

Following the goal, Torquay continued to pressure the Yeovil goal as the much-rotated Glovers struggled to get a hold of the game. On 14 minutes, Callum Dolan had the ball in the net, but the referee called for a foul on Jordan Young in the buildup to the midfielder finding the net. On 18 minutes, Joe Day had to be alert again as Dillon De Silva got a shot away, with Day making a strong save with his right arm.

On 22 minutes, it was the turn of Brad Ash to try and extend Torquay’s lead. The forward found himself in space on the edge of the box before taking a shot, but his effort was always curving away from the goal.

The Glovers eventually had their first chance on 28 minutes as Will Dawes received the ball on the edge of the box. He launched an effort towards the top corner, but Rhys Lovett was at full stretch to deny the winger his first goal of the season. On 38 minutes, the Glovers came close to an equaliser again. Josh Staunton rose highest to a Maguire-Drew free kick, but his downward header was just wide of the post.

Callum Dolan had another glimpse of goal as he brought the ball forward and took a shot, but his low effort fell wide of the post. Moments later, the momentum shifted again as Jordan Young clipped the ball towards Jake Hyde, who was unable to get high enough to steer his header towards goal. On 43 minutes, Jordan Young had a chance of his own as Maguire-Drew played the ball to his feet before shooting from range, but his shot wasn’t troubling Lovett in the Torquay goal.

Just before the break, a corner for Torquay was cleared but only as far as Dillon De Silva, who took a shot at goal. However, it was charged down before it could trouble Joe Day.

The second half started much like the first, and a few minutes in, the Glovers found themselves further behind. Callum Dolan, who troubled the Yeovil defence throughout the first half, managed to find the bottom corner with a driving effort to make it 2-0 to Torquay with 49 minutes on the clock.

On 54 minutes, the hosts continued to push for more. Asa Hall, having just come off the bench, managed to get a shot away from range, but his effort was matched by Joe Day who made a save.

Jordan Maguire-Drew then had a couple of chances within a few minutes as he tried to push the Glovers back into contention. His first from range just curled over the crossbar before he played a one-two off Jordan Young, but his second effort ended up in a similar position to his first attempt.

Mark Cooper then looked to his bench as he brought on fresh legs to try and spark a comeback. Sonny Cox, Frank Nouble, and Matt Worthington all came off the bench to replace Jordan Young, Will Dawes, and Sonny Blu Lo-Everton. Before the final of the three substitutions, Jordan Maguire-Drew had the Glovers’ best effort of the second half, albeit from a very long way out. Maguire-Drew managed to intercept a clearance from Lovett before he tried to loft the ball over him from 40-yards out. The effort had Rhys Lovett scrambling, but fortunately for him, it fell just wide of the post.

The Glovers kept pushing with the fresh bodies now pushing forward as we entered the final 10 minutes. Frank Nouble shot over from a tight angle as he latched onto a loose ball. Jordan Maguire-Drew had an effort from a free kick which flew agonisingly wide. Eventually, the Glovers did get a goal back just before entering stoppage time. A free kick from Jordan Maguire-Drew was lofted towards the back post where Nouble and Idehen were situated. As they challenged for the ball, Torquay’s Archie Harris managed to steer the ball beyond Lovett and into the back of the net.

As the board went up with six additional minutes, there was a sudden feeling of belief among the players and supporters that they might be able to snatch an equaliser. The ball stayed in the Torquay half throughout the six minutes, with Staunton pushing up into attack to try and grab that leveller. Frank Nouble created the best chance for the Glovers as he latched onto a through ball before playing the ball across the area, but Jake Hyde and Sonny Cox were both unable to poke it into the net.

Eventually, time ran out for the Glovers who, despite a late flurry of chances, were unable to extend the tie into penalties as it ended 2-1 to Torquay United.