UNDER-STRENGTH Doveridge gave table-topping Alvo Boys a real scare despite playing with a man short.
The six players of Will Wilcher in goal, defenders Rowan Bates and Alfie Clowes, midfielders Aidan Fletcher and Joe Watts, plus striker Max Williams, all put in man-of-the-match performances.
Alvo took an early lead while the Doves were still getting used to their new formation.
But they soon struck back with a fluid counter-attacking move. Clowes found Fletcher who released Williams.
He beat one man then threaded a lovely ball over to the right where Watts had made a blistering run. And his cool finish levelled the scores at 1-1.
The lads were working extremely hard all over the pitch but were dealt two cruel blows within a matter of minutes.
From a corner Doves tried to clear, but the ball spun off the side of his boot into a defender and into the back of the net.
Then, an off-target shot received a deflection to wrong-foot Wilcher for 3-1 at half-time.
Doveridge exploded out of the blocks second half and were soon back in the game.
In another fine counter-attacking move, Williams’ shot could only be parried by the keeper and Watts knocked in the rebound.
Alvo were stunned into a response and soon restored there two-goal advantage.
Bates, Clowes and Wilcher were working extremely hard at the back to keep Alvo out, while the front three of Fletcher, Watts and Williams were covering every blade of artificial.
Doveridge were still not beaten. Williams went close – forcing a magnificent save from the Alvo keeper.
Fletcher then shot just wide. Watts was looking for his hat-trick and beat the keeper, but not the post.
The game finished with Alvo defeding for their lives, but Doveridge could not close the gap further.