The young O’s registered their first Merit League victory on Saturay with a fine 3-1 win at home to Bristol Rovers.
Ruel Sotiriou opened the scoring in the first half before grabbing another at the start of the second, whilst under-16 Aaron Rowe netted a sensational third to secure a welcome three points.
The side continued to include a number of under-16 players in the matchday squad with three in the starting XI and five making up the substitutes’ bench.
It was a shaky start for the O’s though as goalkeeper Arthur Janata was called upon a number of times in the opening 10 minutes as he had to make vital saves to keep the score line goalless.
However, the O’s countered from one of those Rovers attacks and were able to break the deadlock.
Pat Adamson provided the assist as he played the ball to Sotiriou who cut in onto his right foot and duly curled a superb effort into the top corner of the net.
The O’s held the one-goal advantage at the break, something which they deserved having defended resolutely through the first 45 minutes.
Following the interval, Orient were able to give themselves breathing space with a second to extend their lead. Substitute Charles Clayden did well to win the ball back high up the pitch and found Sotiriou once again, who made no mistake from close range to double his tally for the day and increase the O’s advantage.
The visitors were awarded a lifeline though when Janata was deemed to have committed a foul in the box as his attempt to play caught the oncoming forward, giving the referee had no choice but to point to the spot. James Spruce took the responsibly and sent Janata the wrong way to give Rovers hope.
Undeterred by the goal, the O’s remained solid and it was under-16 Rowe who made sure of the victory with a fine finish.
The winger made a great solo run and scored on his left, a great strike which flew past the keeper and into the back of the net.
Next up for the O’s is a trip to Southend United on Saturday for an 11am kick-off. The teams have meet three times already this season and they will be hoping to make it four games unbeaten against the Blues.
ORIENT: Arthur Janata, Andrew Camilo-Tayaca, Toby Stevenson, Teddy Perkins, Mason Hall (Ernold Haxhiu 90), Dan Happe, Aaron Rowe (Miles Mercury 80), Hector Kyprianou (Charles Clayden 61), Ruel Sotiriou (Amin Benyoucef 90), Rian McLean, Pat Adamson
SUBS: Sam Roach
GOALS: Sotiriou (2), Rowe