Joe Jones nets a hat-trick as ambitious Upottery eye move up the football pyramid

PUBLISHED: 09:22 17 April 2018

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Upottery did their bid for a top six finish in the Macron League Premier Division no harm at all as they defeated Witheridge 4-3 at Glebe Park.

When Upottery and Witheridge meet, the games are usually full of goals – they shared eight in the first meeting this season – and this contest was another end-to-end confrontation.

For Upottery, it was striker Joe Jones who was the headline maker as he scored a hat-trick and the other home goal was netted by Steve Morris.

The Glebe Park men did not have things all their own way, though, for after taking a 2-0 lead they were pegged back before going on to deservedly claim a 10th win in 20 top flight games this season.

Upottery boss Dan Prettejohn said: “It was a strange game in as much as we controlled the first 40 minutes with some terrific football, but missed some glorious chances to net more than the two we had and then, as can happen when you are so on top, a goal for the opposition just before the break changed the game.

“They scored again early in the second half at which stage I was pulling my hair out!

“We got back on track and finished the game as we started, but elements of our play left a lot to be desired!”

Upottery remain well on track for a top six finish – or higher -– and that would be some achievement for the village club who have one eye firmly on the immediate future.

Prettejohn explained saying: “We have ambitions to make the step up the football pyramid and that means a top two finish next season. I do believe that that sort of lofty status is well within our capabilities.

“We are clearly still ‘work in progress’, but we are definitely heading in the right direction.”

However, one thing does concern the Upottery boss, who continued: “This is normally the time of the season when, as a club, we might assess where both teams are and then, perhaps, strengthen the second team. But there’s a problem with that this time round for, with next year being such a big one in terms of clubs looking to step up, I am keen that we have as strong a finish to this campaign as possible for that will make summer recruitment for next season that little bit easier.

“It’ll be a lot easier for yours truly to sell the club’s ambition if I am doing it as say a top four side this year and that’s the sort of level I want us to be reaching.

“We have still one third of our season to play, with all but one of the remaining games being at our place, so I see no reason why we cannot go on and finish the campaign in a lofty spot.”

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