NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Soham Town Rangers savour terrific FA Trophy triumph
PUBLISHED: 11:41 16 October 2019 | UPDATED: 11:41 16 October 2019
Soham Town Rangers player/assistant boss Erkan Okay spoke of his satisfaction following a memorable FA Trophy triumph.
The Greens tasted glory against local rivals Bury Town for the first time in 14 years with a 3-0 victory in a preliminary round tie at Julius Martin Lane last Saturday.
Tom Newman fired Rangers into an 11th minute lead in a first half where they were often under pressure.
But the visitors could find no way past Greens number one Josh Pope who pulled off a series of smart saves to preserve his side's advantage.
Soham doubled their lead eight minutes into the second half as Sam Mulready pounced from close range after a Cameron Watson header was cleared off the line.
And one of the finest results of manager Robbie Mason and Okay's reign was sealed late on when Callum Russell finished smartly after a fine break from Matty Allan.
Rangers' reward is £2,250 in prize money and an all-Cambridgeshire clash at higher-level St Ives Town in the first qualifying round on October 26.
"It was a great day for the club in general and the players were different class," said Okay.
"To beat a set of local rivals after so long is a brilliant feeling and it's definitely right up there with the best results we've had at Soham.
"Bury have started the season really well and there is no denying they are a decent side, but we watched them beforehand and identified a few areas we felt we could exploit.
"We managed to get ourselves ahead despite not being at our best in the first half and we asked for improvement in the second half.
"That's exactly what the lads gave us. We played some great stuff while limiting them to only the odd half-chance.
"We know we'll be underdogs going to a tough Step 3 side in the next round.
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"St Ives are always well-organised and we'll give them plenty of respect, but we'll also do all we can to keep our run going.
"But we will have to be at our best to a man to stand a chance of doing that."
Rangers were beaten 2-0 by Hertford Town in their latest Velocity Trophy group game last night (Tuesday). They also play in that competition next Tuesday when heading to Histon.
Before then Soham return to league action this Saturday when making the BetVictor North Division trip to AFC Sudbury, 3pm.
Khaya Roudette-Gregory has arrived on a youth loan from League One club Peterborough United.
He made his Greens debut as a substitute against Bury Town and then played the full game in midweek.