• By Alessandro Schiavone at The Lamex Stadium

List's brace earns The Boro a point in pulsating 2-2 draw at home to Exeter City



By Alessandro Schiavone at The Lamex Stadium

Two-goal hero Elliott List ensured Stevenage came away with an unlikely draw against high-flying Exeter City in a pulsating 2-2 draw at The Lamex Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

And the brave hosts almost won the game and ended the visitors’ eight-game unbeaten with the last kick of the game had Terence Vancooten had his shooting boots on, when he blazed his shot in the 95th minute.

Stevenage struggled to find their feet early on in the game and were punished by Sam Nombe who cantered into the box and unleashed a central effort which West Ham loanee Joseph Anang should have dealt better with.

List drew Stevenage’s level with a wonderful bending effort before Matt Jay re-established Exeter’s lead shortly five minutes into the second period.

But List eased Stevenage’s nerves when he drew them level with a terrific finish on the hour-mark.

Exeter City should have taken the lead after six minutes but Sam Nombe fired an angled shot wide of the post after Vancooten had been caught in possession by Matt Jay in the top third.

But four minutes after spurning a glorious opportunity, the centre-forward capped off a flourish run with a predatory finish to fire his team into a 10th-minute lead.

That goal served as a wake-up call for the home side who had been pushed back and offered very little going forward

It was not through a lack of trying though, but rather an inability to play through Exeter’s lines and fashion any opportunities against a side defending well at the back.

In the 23rd minute, List levelled the scores when he latched onto Bruno Andrade’s wonderful through ball and curled a lovely effort with the inside of his right foot past the advancing Cameron Dawson in Exeter’s goal.

Suddenly confidence and improvisation came into Stevenage’s play and the hosts’ goal took the sting out of proceedings and made them better in transition.

A few minutes later, Andrade and List combined to the detriment of Exeter’s shaky backline. The Portuguese whipped in a dangerous ball across the six-yard area but Georges Bay was on hand to defuse the situation and block the effort from going in.

On the stroke of half-time Jamie Reid, free like a bird in the penalty area, miscued his shot as Exeter got away with some ponderous defending yet again.

After a sloppy start to the game, Stevenage were finally getting numbers forward, dominating a passive and conservative Exeter City side.

But they didn’t pick up where they left off, and four minutes after the restart, the diminutive Jay restored Exeter’s lead with a headed finish at the far post following Pierce Sweeney’s delivery.

That early goal could have been a shock to Stevenage’s system but again they showed their best side after falling behind.

Timothee Dieng then had the chance to wrap up all three points for Exeter but his left-footed effort came back off the post after he brilliantly feinted past some Stevenage defenders. That was the turning point of the game and Stevenage felt that luck was on their side and that nothing could go wrong anymore.

This time the visitors’ lead didn’t last 13 minutes, but only nine.

It was List again who drew his tenacious side level with a thunderous effort into the far corner after making the most of a long ball forward. Are we sure that Stevenage don’t have a League One striker on their hands here? Three chances, two goals. Passion, hunger, desire, and a clinical touch in front of goal - He ticked most boxes today.

Exeter forced the issue, knowing that the game was there for the taking but Jay could not keep his header down from Caprice’s cross.

In the 74th minute, Owura Edwards cut inside on his right foot only for his effort to be palmed away by the goalkeeper before Nombe sent a wayward follow-up into the stands to the despair of the visiting fans just behind the goal.

Play swung from one end to the other in the final ten minutes as both sides were desperate to turn one point into three.`

Stevenage’s Vancooten had the chance to win it for his side but send his shot over following a set-up piece before the referee blew the final whistle. The inconsolable players trudged off with their heads bowed, as a win would have breathed life back into their season.

Needless to say, Stevenage would have taken a draw against an on-paper superior Exeter team any day of the week before the game kicked off but that missed opportunity at the death will leave club, players and fans with a bitter taste in the mouth for days to come.


STEVENAGE FC

1 Joseph Anang- 2 Luther James-Wildin- 3 Ben Coker- 4 Jake Reeves- 5 Scott Cuthbert- 7 Elliott List- 8 Jake Taylor- 11 Elliott Osborne- 12 Bruno Andrade-15 Terence Vancooten- 20 Jamie Reid

EXETER CITY

1 Cameron Dawson- 2 Jake Caprice- 5 George Ray- 7 Matt Jay-8 Archie Collins- 10 Sam Nombe-12 Joshua Key- 14 Timothee Dieng- 20 Jevani Brown- 26 Pierce Sweeney-34 Alex Hartridge

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