Tuesday evening started with a heightened level of excitement and expectation around the Gallagher stadium on this historical night as Maidstone United opened the new North stand. The official opening of the stand by Jay Saunders son. A tribute to Jay Saunders and a true show of appreciation from the Maidstone United board.
Having stood in the North stand on this historical night for the club, I can say it was a definitely a defining moment in the Maidstone Uniteds history and takes the club to the next level. Now all we need to do is survive our first season in the National League.
Sutton United came to the Gallagher stadium looking to upset the party atmosphere. Sutton started well, whilst the Stones started a little chaotically as they resumed the season after a long break without a game. Maidstone United looked rusty and it was obvious to see.
Worgan was called into action a few times but dealt with the efforts well. As the first half developed the Stones gradually started to settle. The partnership of Loza and Pigott was causing the opposition problems.
Second half the Stones started more sprightly with Loza and Pigott continuing to cause the Sutton United defence a headache, the Stones midfield was taking control of the game with Stuart Lewis and Reece Prestedge pulling the strings and bringing other players into the game.
On the fifty first minute an unfortunate own goal by Jamie Coyle gave Sutton United the lead just as the Stones were starting to take control of the game.
George Oakley was substituted for Alex Flisher as the Stones looked to level the score.
Oakley had a disappointing debut, still has time to settle but will need to do better when given his next opportunity.
The Stones continued to apply the pressure and Jamar Loza went on a mazy run into the box only to be brought down, penalty. Jamar stepped up to take it and confidently delivered a fine finish to level the score despite Will Puddy getting a glove on the shot.
The noise level reaching fever pitch as Jay Saunders brought on another attacking option Yemi Odubade for Jack Paxman in an attempt to clinch all three points. Despite Stuart Lewis grazing the cross bar late on the Stones had to settle for a point.
The Stones remain unbeaten after six games and have hopefully shaken off the rusty first half.
Maidstone United 1 – 1 Sutton United