Zoko's Header Defeats Notts
Former Notts player Francois Zoko got the only goal of the game as his header five minutes into the second half proved the difference, giving Yeovil Town all three points. The home side had a chance to double their lead late on, but Scott Loach sprung to his left to save Leroy Lita's spot kick.
Zoko was the first man to get a shot away in the second minute, the effort was well blocked from eight yards, going behind for a corner which Notts were able to clear.
A minute later and Liam Noble tried to recreate his spectacular effort from Huddersfield earlier in the season, but his half volley from range flew high and wide of Artur Krysiak’s goal.
Noble, who was playing in a free role behind Jon Stead, won the away side’s first corner after ten minutes, his long range effort after good link up play with Stead deflecting behind.
From the corner Notts almost found the opener. A clever low corner from Noble found Stead who had got into space 10 yards out, but his drilled shot was blocked in the six yard box with Krysiak rooted to the spot, and the home side cleared.
The Glovers should have taken the lead in the 15th minute. Elliott Hewitt’s long throw was cleared to Harry Cornick who travelled over half way before finding Marc Laird free on the right of the box but the midfielder dragged his effort well wide of Scott Loach’s right hand post when well placed.
Yeovil were having more of the possession but couldn’t create any clear openings, Cornick firing well wide of Loach’s goal from the edge of the area, Kevin Dawson also having an effort from 18 yards but couldn’t keep his shot down.
With twenty minutes to go until half time Jon Stead found space in the box from Adam Campbell’s pull back but Nathan Smith did well to block the effort.
Neither team were able to gain control of the game, Boyce heading a Noble free kick wide of the far post, Adam Campbell just not able to stretch enough to finish from three yards.
Marc Laird was the first player into the referee’s notebook, the midfielder had already been warned once before a sliding tackle from behind on Rob Milsom saw the number eight cautioned.
In the 37th minute Ryan Dickson became the second player to see yellow, cynically bundling Jason Banton on the right wing as Notts looked to counter attack. Kyrsiak rose highest from the following set piece to claim Noble’s high ball in.
With neither team were able to break the deadlock and the sides went in level at the break.
Five minutes into the second half and Yeovil took the lead. Ryan Dickson’s cross from the left was met by Zoko who lopped his header over Loach and into the net.
Notts reacted well and should have been level in the 53rd minute, Campbell’s cross found Stead eight yards out but he could only put his header over Krysiak’s bar.
A slip in the box gave the hosts the chance to double their lead, but Loach did brilliantly to turn away Cornick’s curling effort.
Jamie Fullarton reacted to going behind by replacing Jason Banton with Ronan Murray in the 56th minute.
Loach did well to turn away Zoko’s deflected effort just after the hour mark, the ball striking Boyce on the way through and was heading towards the corner before the keeper’s intervention.
The former England keeper was on hand again a minute later, making a super one handed reaction save to deny Dawson at the near post and keep the score at 1-0 to the home side.
Artur Krysiak almost gifted the away side an equaliser down the other end, the keeper raced from his goal and missed his clearance, but he recovered well to take the ball away from Murray and Stead before clearing long.
Noble was again causing problems for the Yeovil defence on 68 minutes, the midfielder striking Stead’s lay off first time but his effort curled inches wide of the right hand post with Krysiak rooted to the spot.
Liam Noble became the first Notts player to get his name into the referee’s book on 70 minutes, the midfielder with a late challenge on Connor Roberts.
The Glovers should have doubled their lead and secured the points in the 78th minute. A cross into the Notts box dropped in a group of players, the referee spotting a handball as a snapshot was blocked, pointing to the penalty spot.
Leroy Lita, who had a spell with Notts last season, had only been on the field four minutes but he was the man who placed the ball on the spot. The striker, on his debut, struck the ball hard to the right of the goal, but Scott Loach was on hand to save Notts again, making an outstanding save to his left hand side.
Adam Campbell almost made the debutant pay, striking Stead's knock down from 20 yards, sending the ball just wide of Krysiak's post, the shot brushing the side netting on it's way out.
Andrew Boyce had been sent forward to join the attack for the away side in the final three minutes, his lay off was struck by Curtis Thompson, but he didn't get hold of his shot and Kyrsiak easily saved.
As the game entered four minutes of stoppage time Lita again had the chance to wrap up the points. The striker only needed to beat Loach from eight yards but he got his shot all wrong and it dribbled well wide.
Adam Campbell became the fifth man to be cautioned for a foul on Liam Walsh.
This was to be the last action of the match as Yeovil held the ball in the corner to secure all three points.
Team: Loach, Hollis, Milsom (Burke 71’), Thompson, Noble, Hewitt, Campbell, Boyce, Banton (Murray 56’), Stead©, Audel
Unused Subs: Pilkington, Smith, Sharpe, Atkinson, McLeod
Att: 3,588 (179 away)