Hercules 3 CD Torrevieja 0 …. By Steve Hibberd
Talk of Torry promotion was dealt a sobering blow on Sunday evening with humiliating defeat at table topping Hercules B. Three second half goals from David, Toni and Pedro did the damage against a Torry side that lined up before the game without three key players.
Forwards Marwane and Manu, together with central defender Verdu were all ruled out by Pedreño through injury, so it was a makeshift XI that took to the field against the league leaders.
Prior to the game the main topic of conversation inside the Juan Antonio Samaranch stadium, was whether or not Torry could improve on their abysmal showing the previous week against Calpe. Having blown the chance of leap frogging Hercules, they had to be content with 3rd spot, but were still only a single point behind the 2 front runners.
Before start of play, Torry boasted the meanest defensive record in the league, having conceded only 5 goals, but with only 13 goals scored, their tally at the other end simply wasn’t good enough, with only mid table Callosa having converted fewer.
Hercules could have been a couple of goals to the good by the interval but poor finishing from Toni and Rafa saw the two sides reach the interval without either having troubled the scorecard.
In a scrappy 45 it wasn’t until the 35th minute that the visitors troubled Roberto in the Hercules goal but even then the save from Beltrán was fairly routine.
Hercules looked menacing from the restart and within a minute David, who had followed in on a Buyo save, put the home side in front from close range.
Torry had no answer and when Borja was dismissed for a second yellow card on the hour mark their task became much harder. Walid headed just over on 75 minutes but this was about as close as they came with Hercules continuing to dominate the midfield exchanges.
A fine solo effort saw Toni double the Hercules advantage before the visitors were handed a lifeline when Beltrán was bundled over in the box. The player picked himself up to take the spotkick but it simply wasn’t Torry’s day as the strike hit his tame attempt against the post.
Almost from the rebound Hercules broke up field to punish the visitors with a third which was converted by the diminutive Pedro when he cut inside to hit a low shot under the body of Buyo.
The win extends Hercules status at the top while, amazingly Torry remain in 3rd spot after Jove Espanol could only manage a draw.
Next Sunday Torry are once again back at the Vicente Garcia for a 5pm ko against 2nd placed Villajoyosa where Pedreño will be looking for a much better performance.