It was a Tour of Duty to remember for Aldershot, as goals from Tyler Frost and Joe Partington in the second half gave the Shots all the points at Roots Hall in a 2-1 win over Southend.
A resilient second half display from the Shots was the difference, overturning a 1-0 half time deficit to send the 420 travelling fans home happy.
McNeilly made 2 changes to Tuesday’s side, with Hagi Mnoga and Jake Hutchinson dropping out of the side that drew 1-1 with Maidenhead. Myles Kenlock switched to left centre back, as Tyler Frost filled in for Kenlock on the left of the midfield four, and Jack Barham went up top to make his first start for the Shots since signing from Maidstone.
The travelling Shots fans were in fantastic voice before kick off, and their efforts of the pitch were reflected on it, with the Shots making a fast start to the clash.
Amaluzor and Barham were working well together in the Shots attack, with Amaluzor finding himself in space, testing Steve Arnold in the Southend goal from distance early on. Barham had the best opportunity of the opening exchanges for the Shots, getting on the end of a cross from Amaluzor seeing his shot kept out only by a fantastic block by Shaun Hobson.
Despite the early pressure, it was the hosts who took the lead. A loose header was picked up by Dan Mooney, and after holding off Joe Partington and Henry Ochieng, Mooney slipped through Rhys Murphy, who slotted beyond Ashby-Hammond to open the scoring after 16 minutes.
Jack Barham was again in the thick of things for the Shots, having the best chance to level the game in the 22nd minute. Cordner and Barham were on the same wavelength as the England C centre back slipped the ball past the high Southend line to find Jack Barham, who timed his run to perfection. However, some last ditch defending by the pitch saw the ball bobble up and Barham miss-hit his shot over the bar.
The Shots were keeping a hold of the ball well, but only created two clear cut chances to level the game. The first came after Barham was fouled by Hobson in a promising position, but Oliver Pendlebury fired over from the resulting free kick. Moments before the break came the second, as Oliver Pendlebury was again involved, finding Tyler Frost from a counter attack, with Frost cutting in and firing just wide.
HALF TIME: Southend 1-0 Shots
The first shuffle of the pack from Ross McNeilly came at the break, as Henry Ochieng on a booking was replaced by Michael Klass.
After a quiet opening to the second half, the game kicked into life when the Shots came close in the 55th minute. Tyler Cordner delivered a good ball low into the box, and a dummy from Justin Amaluzor lead the ball perfectly into the path of Oliver Pendlebury who saw his effort defelcted behind for a corner. Aldershot spent the next few minutes camped in and around the Southend box, but were unable to find a goal.
After a lot of good play, Aldershot finally found a way back into the game in the 63rd minute. Some good work from Justin Amaluzor saw him turn and play a ball through which fell to Tyler Frost, free as a bird in the Southend box, and he calmly put the ball past Steve Arnold to level the game for the Shots.
Moments later, the Shots were given a golden chance to take the lead after Justin Amaluzor was taken out by Steve Arnold in the box. Joe Partington stepped up, and was as cool as you like as he sent his penalty in to the top corner, and sent the travelling Shots fans into raptures.
The Shots were doing well to control the game after taking the lead, which saw Ross McNeilly introduce Josh McQuiod and Jake Hutchinson for Justin Amaluzor and Jack Barham. Aldershot held on really well, with the whole side working hard to keep the constant Southend attacks at bay.
After withstanding the pressure, the referee blew his whistle to confirm the Shots went home with all the points.
Aldershot team: 1. Luca Ashby-Hammond, 2. Myles Wenlock, 4. Joe Partington (c), 5. Tyler Cordner, 7. Justin Amaluzor (10. Josh McQuoid, 84′), 8. Tyler Frost, 16. Corey Jordan, 18. Henry Ochieng (20. Michael Klass, 46′), 19. Oliver Pendlebury, 23. Ryan Glover, 30. Jack Barham (17. Jake Hutchinson, 71′), Unused subs: 36. Lloyd Thomas, 15. Karoy Anderson