Saints overcome The Greens
By John Anderson
Holmer beaten by better side
Saints proved to be a much better side than Abingdon United, who The Greens had beaten 3 days earlier. Their passing game stretched the home side who failed to close down the visitors’ movement all over the field. There were times when Holmer looked to be getting into the game, but generally the Northants’ side looked to be in control. The Green were able to field nine of the eleven who mainly featured the previous Saturday. Aaron Brown came back into goal, and the injured Pavel Kotwica was replaced by Leo Blackman.
It was Blackman who set up the first real chance of the match. His teasing near post cross was almost turned in, but the ball rebounded a few yards out to Martin Lancaster. However the shot was blocked, when a goal seemed certain. On 28 minutes poor marking at a set-piece allowed Brackley a clear header at goal. But again the firm attempt was cleared, this time just before it entered the goal. The only goal of the first half arrived 7 minutes later. A pull back from the left to the edge of the Holmer box found the retreating Holmer midfield failing to pick their man up. Hammond took one touch before lobbing the ball into the far side of the goal, with the aid of the underside of the bar. HT 0-1
Holmer started the second half brightly and Powles brought an excellent save out of the Brackley ‘keeper on 47 minutes with a terrific shot. On 58 minutes The Greens nearly equalised, when Jamie West engineered space for a firm shot, which beat the ‘keeper. But it rebounded back into play off the foot of the post. After these alarms Saints gradually reasserted themselves, and increased their lead with 15 regulation minutes to go. A through ball found Knight racing into the area, and his well-placed low shot across the goal found the bottom corner. Holmer hit back almost immediately. A Curtis Stone free-kick was headed back across goal by substitute Dan Hunt, and Dean Munday bundled the ball in at the other post, just beating team-mate Powles to the vital touch.
Almost ten minutes of good Holmer play followed. West looked to be setting himself up to shoot on 85 minutes, when not marked 20 yards out. But at the last moment he chose to pass to an overlapping colleague, and the slightly heavy pass came to nothing. As the game moved into stoppage time, the result was sealed when Brackley profited from good fortune. A very wayward shot was going ten yards wide. But it went straight at a colleague, Stott. He was able to kill the ball, and despatched it quickly and efficiently into the other side of the Holmer goal. Before Brown could regain his balance and position.
Team: Brown, James Jarrott, Michael Duffy, Stone ©, Munday, Luke Rhyll, Lancaster, Matt Wooster, West, Powles, Blackman.
Substitutes Used: Hunt, Jonathan Cox, & Tom Fifield.
Substitutes Not Used: Anthony Tyson, & James Burrell.