Although it took winning a penalty shoot out at the J. Hearnden Skip Hire Community Stadium to progress in the F.A. Trophy, Welling United did so at the expense of Taunton Town.

After Saturday’s matches, only nine National League South teams had been successful with thirteen dropping out, so with two teams from that division meeting each other in Welling, it was going to end ten to fourteen, whatever the outcome. Eventually, it took nine penalties apiece, before Welling took the spoils.

Austen Booth had an early chance for the visitors but his header came back off the crossbar after which it was nip and tuck for most of the opening period.

Josh Chambers had an opportunity for his first Welling goal when following up on Dan Lavercombe’s good save from Crossley Lema but it came out at a difficult height and he couldn’t drag it home.

Both goalkeepers were then called upon into making saves. Javarn Pitterson held onto a Ross Stearn free kick at the second attempt, then Lavercombe got down well to save from Kain Adom.

However, there was nothing that Lavercombe could do one minute before half time. Booth knocked down a diagonal cross into Adom’s path and his twenty-five yard shot flew beyond the Peacock’s custodian.

Seven minutes after the break, Taunton levelled. A scramble in the six yard box ended with Pitterson bringing down Ollie Chamberlain and Stearn scored from the penalty spot.

Further opportunities for both sides required saves out of the respective opposing goalkeepers, however it took until five minutes from time before the net bulged again. Lema went on one of his trademark powerful runs, and upon entering the penalty area, he was brought down. Tristan Abrahams stepped up and fired home. Four minutes later, parity was again restored. Another scramble in the goalmouth ended with Malachi Linton converting from close range.

In stoppage time, Taunton tried to turn the screw and Pitterson was called upon to make a good save from Stearn then a block from Linton before the referee called time and the tie went straight to penalties.

Taunton went first and Stearn, Linton, Dylan Morgan and Nick McCootie all scored while, in between, Dominic Odusanya, Abrahams, Adom and Lewis White did likewise for the hosts. Jay Foulston blasted high over for the Peacocks giving Enoch Muwonge the chance to win it however, Lavercombe went the right way to save even though he looked to have started off his line.

Dan Ball, Zac Smith and Chamberlain netted for the Peacocks and Amadou Kassarate, Lachlan Byrd and Taylor Curran did likewise for the Wings. Booth then stepped up for the visitors and Pitterson went the right way to save leaving Rob Howard with another chance to win it. He made no mistake, sending Lavercombe the wrong way, and Welling into the third round in which they will host Brackley Town.

Welling United: Pitterson, Lema, Green (Howard 48), Kassarate, Curran, Byrd, Tanga (White 82), Odusanya, Abrahams, Chambers (Muwonge 74), Adom. Sub not used: Jones, Sekajja, White, Papadopoulos, Kamara.