Ward stars as Town finish the year with a win
Town ended 2013 with a bang hitting Yeovil Town for five at the John Smith’s Stadium.
It didn’t start quite to plan for the Terriers though, who went behind when Ishmael Miller pounced on a loose ball.
Town were up and running in the 23rd minute courtesy of Adam Clayton and went in at half time two ahead thanks to Martin Paterson and Joel Lynch.
Ward bagged a second half brace with his first being of the highest quality, but his second will be one substitute ‘keeper Chris Dunn won’t want to remember.
Ward continued upfront for the Terriers in the absence of the injured James Vaughan and had the first sight of goal in the second minute, but failed to find the target with his header.
Yeovil were camped in their half during a fantastic opening burst from the Terriers, which should have seen them take the lead. Paul Dixon crossed into the path of Martin Paterson, who failed to connect from six yards when faced with an open goal.
However, the Glovers didn’t waste their first foray into Town’s penalty box, capping it with a goal from on loan striker Ishmael Miller. Town failed to clear Joel Grant’s corner sufficiently and after Liam Davis had nodded on, Miller capitalised on Alex Smithies’ hesitancy to slot home.
The Terriers had showed plenty of character to come from behind against Derby on Boxing Day and they did the same again, but to far greater effect!
Adam Clayton started the comeback, timing his run perfectly to slide home Ward’s low cut back before the winger laid the ball on plate for Paterson to smash him his second goal in successive games.
Between Town’s goals the visitors showed what they were capable of on the break when Liam Davis found space on the left and flashed a low shot just wide of Smithies’ upright.
Yeovil were having worse problems at the back though, and went in at the break two behind when Joel Lynch expertly guided Adam Hammill’s corner home with his head.
The second half didn’t bring any respite for the Yeovil defence – well apart from Stech who had been replaced by Chris Dunn.
Ward had the first chance of the half on 54 minutes when he ran on to Murray Wallace’s pass, but passed the opportunity up by cutting on to his left, with his hurried shot being blocked by the recovering Yeovil defenders.
Yeovil were far from defeated though, and had a spurt of chances to get back into the game. Wallace denied James Hayter at the near post; Davis shot wide when well placed; substitute Joe Ralls curled agonizingly wide and Miller warmed the hands of Smithies with a powerful strike.
However, the Glovers’ honeymoon in Town’s penalty box was brought to an abrupt end just after the hour mark when Ward grabbed the goal his link play deserved – and what a goal it was! He cut in from the left before unleashing a rocket past the despairing dive of Dunn.
Dunn had no chance with Ward’s first, but he literally gifted him a second just a few minutes later. Ward’s 25 yard shot was hit with some power, but it was a regulation save for the stopper who allowed the ball to squirm under him and over the line.
Sam Hoskins wasted a couple of good openings for the Glovers before the final whistle, but they could do nothing to prevent Town giving over 12,000 fans a late Christmas present.
Town’s team (3-5-2):
Alex Smithies (c); Joel Lynch, Murray Wallace, Tommy Smith; Paul Dixon, Jonathan Hogg, Adam Clayton, Oliver Norwood (Duane Holmes, 77), Adam Hammill; Martin Paterson (Jon Stead, 70), Danny Ward (Sean Scannell, 69)
Ian Bennett, Calum Woods, Anthony Gerrard, Oscar Gobern,
Bookings Yeovil: Liam Fontaine 56