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Reds win to send Swansea Uni down

A SEAN Cronin penalty and a goal by Eli Phipps consigned the visitors to a defeat which confirmed their almost inevitable relegation from the JD Cymru South.

Incredibly, knowing that anything other than a win would seal their fate, the Uni. turned up with a bare eleven, and this was reduced even further when Jordan Pike was injured, leaving them to play with ten men for the entire second half.

Even so, despite this, the Reds made heavy weather of the eventual outcome, failing to convert a glut of chances, while Luke Martin in the Uni. goal was simply outstanding, denying the home side with a string of brilliant saves which kept the scoreline down to a reasonable level.

The visitors also created some chances despite their depleted numbers, and almost took an early lead when a corner curled into the goalmouth was helped towards the net but hacked off the line to prevent a certain score.

Following this early scare, the hosts took charge, gaining plenty of possession without really offering up any credible threat, although Martin was called on to keep out a well-struck effort by Josh Allen with the loose ball being blasted over the top.

Louis Gerrard was the next home player to be denied by the goalkeeper who diverted his attempt which was destined for the top corner over the bar at full stretch.

A clearance by Cronin led to Joe Hopkins gaining possession, and his delivery low across the face of goal was inches away from Tim Parker making contact for a tap-in.

Martin was being kept fully occupied, getting down to safely gather another Allen effort, and despite their overall dominance the Reds simply could not conjure up that vital killer ball to open up their opponents.

The visitors were then reduced to ten men shortly before the break with Pike being forced off with a leg injury, and an already difficult scenario suddenly became a whole lot worse.

Still, they went in at the interval having successfully survived a difficult first half, but knowing there was more of the same to come after the restart, with the home side completely dominating possession in wide open spaces, although their goal was only being subjected to a string of half-chances with some frustration beginning to creep into the Reds` play as they failed to achieve a breakthrough.

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They eventually were thrown a lifeline with the award of a penalty on 66 minutes when Brandon Griffiths was brought down in the box, with the spot kick being duly smashed home by Cronin.

Seven minutes later, Phipps, who had earlier replaced Owen Bancroft, doubled the lead when he latched on to a Gerrard assist before finding the net via the inside of the post.

Despite their numerical disadvantage, the visitors still at times were dangerous on the break, and Scott Coughlan was called into a rare piece of action, keeping out a shot on target by Joshua Cole, with John Roberts failing to convert the rebound from a decent position

Just before the final whistle, the Uni. launched another attack when Cronin lost possession in midfield, allowing Cole a run on goal, forcing James Parry to divert his finish for a corner.

At the close, the Reds were glad to have seen off the their opponents who, to their credit, put up a reasonable showing in the circumstances, and the win elevates the home side to second in the table above Briton Ferry Llansawel with both sides having one more match to play, the Reds at Trefelin BGC on Saturday, April 29, kick off 2.30pm, while the Ferry travel to meet Abergavenny Town.