14th September 2019

Wasting no time in marking his return to the side from injury, Rhys Murphy took just five minutes to grab his second of the campaign from a clever free-kick routine.

Flying forward with the ease it was 2-0 before the 15-minute mark when Myles Hippolyte rounded off a flowing team move.

Purring with the confidence the onslaught continued as chances continued to rain down on Fylde’s goal, with the Lancashire outfit making it to the break without further punishment.

Showing shoots of promise before half-time, the Coasters grabbed a goal back after the restart through Kurt Willoughby before the two-goal advantage was restored by debutant Jimmy Smith.

As the goals continued to fly in, Willoughby poached a second of the afternoon to setup a nervy conclusion but the afternoon wasn’t to be spoiled as Darren Sarll’s side continued their march up the National League table.

Welcoming back several key personnel from injury, Town’s boss was tempted into tinkering with the side that made it three consecutive wins last weekend. 

Captain Lee Collins and number nine Murphy both made their returns from hamstring problems, whilst Brighton loanee James Tilley made his first start after two appearances from the bench. 

With competition for places rife, Tom Bradbury and Albi Skendi were unfortunate to start amongst the substitutes whilst Courtney Duffus missed out with a hamstring concern. 

Making a habit of taking the lead early on, the green and whites repeated the feat by scoring after just five minutes for the second match in a row.

After Tilley won a free-kick on the edge of the box, his lay-off allowed Murphy to immediately get back amongst the goals with a curling shot from the edge of the box.

With the home faithful still in full voice celebrating the goal, it was almost two 60 seconds later when Hippolyte’s low drive from 20 yards had to be parried behind by a busy James Montgomery. 

On hand again to claim Murphy’s volley from the angle, he could do nothing to stop the next effort as Yeovil’s rampant start continued. 

Finding Matt Worthington in a crossing position in the box, he showed great awareness to spot the late run of Hippolyte who coolly converted first-time from 12 yards to extend the dream start.

With a stranglehold on both possession and the score, the hosts were playing with freedom and could’ve doubled their lead in the space of three minutes. 

Rising highest from a corner, Luke Wilkinson had his header cleared off the line by a combination of Montgomery and a Coasters defender before Murphy thought he’d grabbed his second of the afternoon on 24 minutes. 

Collecting Wilkinson’s miss-hit shot the striker emphatically found the back of the net from just inside the box but for the offside flag to cut short his celebrations.  

Fortunate not to be already facing a miserable trip back up the M5, Dave Challinor’s side managed to produce moments of hope that suggested the game may not yet be over.

Mark Yeates brought a routine save out of O’Brien to bring him into the match before the stopper had to be at his best to dive at full-stretch and get a fingertip to Danny Rowe’s low shot from 20 yards. 

In the last act of the half, Jordan Williams found the back of the net after Rowe’s free-kick ricocheted around the box, but his sheepish reaction said it all as the ‘goal’ was ruled out for offside.

Needing a change in tactics if their trip south was to be salvaged, the Coasters made a double change at the break that almost paid off immediately as Willoughby came within inches of connecting with Yeates’ teasing cross.

Struggling to hit the heights of an impressive opening 45 minutes, the Glovers continued to be on the defensive before Fylde reduced the arrears. 

As the game ticked to the hour-mark Willoughby – who’d made an impact after coming on – stabbed home at the back post to create a tense feel around Huish Park. 

Now far less comfortable than the home faithful had expected after the convincing start to the afternoon, Challinor’s side came within the width of the post of equalising. 

Cutting in from left-back, Duxbury looked to complete his weaving run with a shot into the corner but for a stunning O’Brien fingertip to divert the ball onto the woodwork and away.

Proving to be a vital point in the match, the stopper’s efforts were rewarded at the other end within minutes when Smith marked his first appearance in green and white in style. 

Albi Skendi had the awareness to end his mesmerising run with a pass to the new number five who made no mistake from the angle to restore the two-goal advantage on 78 minutes.

However, a sigh of relief around BA22 was shortlived as Willoughby popped up again from close range with a few minutes remaining to convert Kyle Jameson’s cross.

In the dying embers of the match both Gold Omotayo and Hippolyte had the opportunity to put the game beyond doubt, but 3-2 proved to be enough as the hosts’ rich vein of form continued.

Yeovil Town: O’Brien; Hutton, Wilkinson, Collins (Bradbury 80′), Dickinson; Lee, Worthington, Tilley (Smith 60′), Hippolyte; Murphy (Skendi 74′), Omotayo.
Bookings: Collins 15′, Worthington 52′.
Subs not used: Alcock, D’Ath.

AFC Fylde: Montgomery; Craigen (Whitmore 46′), Byrne, Jameson, Duxbury; Croasdale, Philliskirk, Haughton (Willoughby 46′); Rowe, Williams, Yeates (Bradley 73′).
Subs not used: Ngwatala, Lavercombe.