Aldershot were able to get some successful minutes in the tank with a 1-0 victory over AFC Sudbury.
The Shots looked to assert their superiority early on and enjoyed the vast majority of possession and territory in the opening exchanges as Josh Stokes looked bright on his return to Sudbury and Lorent Tolaj sent an effort over the bar from outside the box.
A goalmouth scramble gave Aldershot a golden opportunity to take the lead in the 12th minute as Trialist B saw two efforts blocked and Coby Rowe and Stokes forced good saves.
Jack Barham, back from a precautionary weekend off at the Shots’ visit to Eastbourne, was into the starting lineup and looked lively along the frontline; Constantly looking to spring the offside trap and seeing plenty of half-chances early on.
Tyler Frost was lining up at left-wingback this evening, further demonstrating his brilliant versatility, and was very bright down the left-wing. In the 24th minute he played it back to Tolaj but the Swiss striker’s effort was blasted just over the bar.
Sudbury struggled to get into the action early on but came into the game as it progressed and Jordi Van Stappershoef was called into action just after the half-hour mark, pulling off a quality double-save from close-range.
But, Aldershot got their deserved breakthrough in the 35th minute through Jack Barham. Josh Stokes beat his man down the right and his dink into the centre was expertly guided home by Barham.
Aldershot almost had a second with the final touch of the first-half as Theo Widdrington rose highest from a corner but his header could only meet the side-netting.
As they did on Saturday’s visit to Eastbourne Borough, the Shots made wholesale changes with almost an entirely new XI appearing for the second-half. Only Van Stappershoef in the sticks and Trialist B remained.
Tommy Willard continued to look lively, as he did at the weekend, and had two efforts from outside the box saved within the first 10 minutes of the second-half – one causing a lot more trouble to Sudbury’s ‘keeper than the other.
Ryan Glover returned to the right wing-back role he made his own last season and looked lively down the right, constantly causing his opposite number problems and delivering inviting crosses. A good delivery from a free-kick saw Hady Ghandour head just over the bar near the hour.
The majority of the action seemed to be coming through Willard and Glover and Willard was catching the eye with his skillful dribbling and intent to beat his man at every occasion.
Alex MacAllister was introduced with 15 minutes to play and saw two chances as the game entered the closing stages. Both times he received the ball just inside the box but both times his efforts were just over the bar.
Shots 1st half lineup: 1. Jordi Van Stappershoef, 4. Theo Widdrington, 5. Coby Rowe, 6. Cian Harries (c), 7. Aaron Jones, 8. Tyler Frost, 9. Lorent Tolaj, 14. Trialist A, 15. Trialist B, 17. Jack Barham, 23. Josh Stokes.
Shots 2nd half lineup: 1. Jordi Van Stappershoef (13. Trialist C 60′), 2. Ollie Harfield, 3. Ben Shroll, 10. Tommy Willard, 11. Ryan Glover, 12. Zain Walker, 15. Trialist B (16. Alex MacAllister 75’), 18. Henry Ochieng, 19. Hady Ghandour, 20. Keane Anderson, 21. Maxwell Mullins.