Late Goal Seals Victory
Bala Town 1 (Sheridan 72)
Wolves 3 (Ennis 10, Randall 21, Rainey 90+2)
The Wolves under 23s enjoyed a more than useful workout against Welsh Premier League Bala Town at the picturesque Maes Tegid Stadium on Wednesday evening with victory not ensured until Ryan Rainey struck a third goal deep into stoppage time.
Will Randall got in the first shot of the game which was comfortably saved by home keeper Craig Vernon before Anthony Breslin had concede a corner following a dangerous low cross from Mike Hayes. Les Davies’s kick was cleared.
Good work from Randall then opened up an opportunity for Dan Armstrong whose dipping shot was saved by Vernon at the second attempt.
But the keeper was beaten in the tenth minute when Niall Ennis took advantage of a poor clearance to by-pass the keeper and slot the ball into the empty net.
Armstrong was close to a second with a cross-shot that flashed across the face of goal and, when the winger took a corner in the 17th minute, Connor Johnson powered a header narrowly over the bar.
Wolves were lucky not to concede a penalty when Johnson appeared to shove Hayes and the mood of the home supporters wasn’t lifted when play swept to the other end and Randall thumped the ball past Vernon from 20-yards to put Wanderers two goals to the good.
Vernon made a superb save to turn away Donovan Wilson’s shot on the turn and then Bala went close when Hayes’s drive was turned into the side netting by Harry Beasley.
The Molineux keeper dived full length to save a fierce drive from Eddie Toner before Hakeem Odoffin ventured upfield and fired into the side netting of Vernon’s goal.
Half-Time: Bala 0 Wolves 2
Scott Sellars changed his entire team for the start of the second-half whilst Bala made four substitutions.
Duckens Nazon tried his luck with a low shot from 25-yards that was saved but chances since the break at either end were few and far between although the game was still being played at a frantic pace.
A poor clearance from Vernon went straight to Nazon on the edge of the box but the keeper atoned for his lapse by denying the Dutch striker with a tremendous save.
Bala had looked more of a threat since the interval and they pulled a goal back in the 72nd minute when Ian Sheridan hooked the ball home at the far post following a cross from Chris Venables.
Vernon saved from Jordan Allan and when an Elliot Watt free-kick from the edge of the box found its way through the defensive wall, the keeper was perfectly positioned to save.
He then made another impressive stop from Nazon but was finally beaten in the second minute of stoppage time when Rainey’s precision drive from 20-yards eluded his outstretched fingers and flew just inside the post.
Lakesiders: Vernon, Valentine, Stephens, Owens, Bell, Venables, Tone (Burke 45), Trialist (*Toner 78), Haye (*Davies 66), Smith (Wade 45), Davies (Sheridan 45).
Unused sub: Fisher. (* Toner and Davies went back on after being substituted)
Wolves first-half: Beasley, Odoffin, Breslin, Finnie, Johnson, Leak, Armstrong, Herc, Wilson, Ennis, Randall.
Wolves second-half: Brown, Sealey-Harris, Sanderson, Osbourne, Goodliffe, Heredia, Rainey, Watt, Allan, Nazon, Whittingham.
Referee: P. Roszkowski.
PICTURES: NAOMI JONES