Sunday 8th January 2023 saw the Strollers 50s start their Lincs League Premiership campaign.
The squad was:
Dave Moore GK
First game was an early start at 9-30 am against Louth Town, who in the past have proven to be a top quality side.
The game started very slowly for the Strollers and Dave Moore, making his debut in goal, made 3 great fingertip saves to keep the ball out.
As the game moved on the Strollers' passing improved and they became more resilient in defence. This improvement in performance was rewarded late in the half when a ball played into Barrett-Treen up front was steered with a first time pass into the path of an advancing Iain Ross, who pinged the ball into the top corner of the Louth net. Half time 1-0 to Strollers.
Second half was a very closely fought affair. Another great save was made by Dave Moore to secure a clean sheet on his debut. Strollers continued to defend resolutely and deserved the final 1-0 victory.
The second game was against Boston.
This matchup was approached very cautiously by both teams, with Boston managing only 2 shots in the first half, with Stamford counting just 1 in response.
The second half once again started out to be a very cagey encounter, but as it developed the game opened up, with Iain Ross having 3 great shots at goal, each of them on target and each of them being saved well by the Boston keeper.
Soon after this, a quick breakaway by Boston resulted in what felt at the time to be an unlikely goal to put Strollers 1-0 behind.
Jez Norris had an opportunity to level the scores when intercepting a loose ball in the Boston defence, but his first time shot was smartly saved by the Boston keeper and the ball popped over the crossbar.
So, in an even match, the Strollers were unfortunate to lose 1-0.
In the third and final game of the day, Strollers pitted themselves against a powerful Sleaford Academicals side.
Sleaford started quickly and a mistake in the Strollers defence gifted them an early goal.
Strollers responded well and soon drew level when Iain Ross rifled a shot past the Sleaford & England keeper John Sykes.
It stayed that way for the remainder of the first half, but with Paul Blakemore receiving 2 warnings, resulting in the possibility of a blue card and a sin binning if he infringed a third time, changes were made in the second half. Sleaford also made a change, bringing on former Stroller Scott Sawyers to partner the always dangerous Steve Wyness up front. This combination proved too much for the Strollers defence and Sleaford capitalised on this to bag 3 late goals to overcome Stamford 4-1.
So 1 win, 2 losses but 3 good performances in a very competitive league.
Strollers 1 Louth 0
Strollers 0 Boston 1
Strollers 1 Sleaford 4