24.10.2006

F.A. Trophy 1st Qualifying Round Replay

Halesowen Town

Cowley (44), Forsdick (55)

Hednesford Town

Pedro (25)

(1) 2

(1) 1

Attendance

MoTM

Current Form

Next Match

362

Chris White

L W W D D W W D D L

Frickley Athletic (H) 28.10.06

Hednesford's F.A. Trophy campaign ended almost as soon as it had begun as local rivals Halesowen moved on to the second qualifying round with a goal in each half to beat Phil Starbuck's side in tonight's replay and earn themselves a tie with step four Clitheroe in the second qualifying round

 

Phil Starbuck stuck with the same side as the one that had started Saturday's game and also named an identical bench with Dave Whittaker and Marlon Walters still unavailable for selection

Yeltz manager Paul Holleran made only one change to his side from Saturday's XI as ex-Hednesford man Nick Amos was replaced by another ex-Pitman, left-back Grant Beckett 

The all red-clad Pitmen had the best of the opening exchanges, with flying winger Phil Hadland testing Halesowen goalkeeper Danny Woodhall in just the fourth minute of the game as he drove a low shot straight into the arms of the stopper. Hednesford skipper Chris White followed this up with a snapshot on the rebound but saw his follow-up shot deflected wide of goal

The Pitmen continued on the front foot through Chad Sheppard in the eighth minute, winning the ball in midfield before driving into the Halesowen half and drilling a low shot wide of goal

Excellent hold-up play from Alexander three minutes later saw the striker lay the ball off to White once more, who horribly skewed his first-time shot into the hardy Hednesford supporters behind Woodhall's goal

Halesowen's first half-chance fell to one of Saturday's goalscorers in the nineteenth minute as Alex Cowley crossed well for Matt Lewis, only for the striker to head just wide of Ryan Young's far post from ten yards out as he was pressured into his header by Tom Marshall

A minute later, Hadland's corner kick was cleared as far as Marshall, whose recycled cross was a touch too hard for both Alexander and Dyer as they arrived at the far post

The Pitmen should have taken the lead midway through the first half as Iain Screaton found a pocket of space but somehow failed to hit the target with a scuffed shot wide of goal from close-range

The away side's persistence finally paid off in the twenty-fifth minute as on-loan Terry Henshaw sent Ross Dyer away down the left with a fine pass. The youngster cut inside and beat Rob Warner before laying the ball off to Pedro, who turned the ball home from close range despite the attentions of Dave Haywood

Woodhall kept his side in contention three minutes later as he denied Pedro a quickfire double by pushing the winger's first-time volley from a Hadland cross around his post for a corner kick

Dyer did well to escape the attentions of Preston on twenty-eight minutes as he raced into a pass from White, getting goal-side of the defender before seeing his shot turned away by the toe of Warner

Three minutes later, Screaton arrived late at the far post to head goalwards from a Hadland cross, only to see his effort end up the wrong side of Woodhall's left-hand post

Halesowen winger Simon Forsdick finally created an opening for the impotent hosts on thirty-five minutes as he headed tamely into the open arms of Young

Alexander got on the end of another fine delivery from Henshaw just sixty seconds later, but his downward header failed to test Woodhall as he nodded wide from eight yards out

Pedro left the field temporarily in the fortieth minute of the game for a lengthy bout of treatment after White had landed on top of him as the pair challenged for a high ball in midfield

Despite being second best for the majority of the first period, Halesowen got themselves level once more on the stroke of half-time as Forsdick's surging run down the right saw him time his pass through to the overlapping Cowley perfectly, who confidently fired past the advancing Young from fifteen yards out

Half-time saw the Pitmen make their first change of the evening after Pedro had admitted defeat in his attempt to recover from the bout of concussion he had picked up - Keenen Meakin-Richards came on in his place for the second-half

 The home side came out for the second half buoyed by their late equaliser and showed a far more positive attitude; Meakin-Richards was called into action two minutes after the restart as he made a goal-saving challenge to deny ex-Pitman Paul Szewczyk a clear sight at goal

Former Kidderminster Harriers man Lewis was proving a tricky opponent for the Hednesford defence and nearly put the Yeltz ahead on fifty minutes as he somehow failed to connect with Haywood's cross into the six-yard box

 

 A period of Halesowen pressure in and around the Hednesford penalty area finally led to their second goal of the evening on fifty-five minutes. Young conceded a corner kick which former team-mate Williams swung into the near post, where Forsdick was on hand to powerfully head past Young from close-range

Dyer was prevented a clear run at goal by a last-ditch challenge from Gary Knight two minutes later as the striker was played into the Halesowen penalty area by Alexander's through ball

Another fine run from Dyer with the Pitmen's next attack saw the youngster take a touch before electing to shoot on sight, only to watch his rising shot clear the crossbar

Alexander also wasted a great opportunity to level matters on the hour mark, side-footing wide of goal after Hadland's great cross from the left had picked the former Telford man out at the far post

 

The game started to become stretched with the Pitmen pushing forwards and Halesowen content to catch their visitors on the counter-attack. Lewis testing Young with an effort on sixty-four minutes, breaking through the high line of the Hednesford defence to fire in a low shot at goal that the Hednesford number one tipped away from goal

A minute later, White sliced a good chance for the Pitmen wide of goal as he wildly lashed his long-range effort a good ten yards wide of Woodhall's right-hand post

 

On sixty-seven minutes, White played Henshaw into space down the left, with the left-back trying his luck with a cross-cum-shot that sailed narrowly wide of the far post as Woodhall frantically backtracked towards his goal

This appeared to be as good as the Pitmen could muster, as they started to run out of stamina and ideas in the final twenty-five minutes. Forsdick almost put the game out of the Pitmen's reach on sixty-seven minutes but dragged his angled shot wide of goal

A minute later, Cowley tried his luck with a long-range effort that was deflected goalwards by Marshall, who was thankful for Young's fine positioning to claim the ball on his goal line

A superb run from the impressive Forsdick on seventy-two minutes saw him make a run from deep in his own half to the edge of the Hednesford penalty area, chipping the ball into the path of Lewis who was just caught on his heels and failed to connect with the ball in

With eleven minutes remaining, Williams tested his ex-Hednesford team-mate Young with a curling free-kick over the wall that was beaten away by the stopper, who saw the ball late as it appeared in front of him out of the glare of the floodlights

With four minutes remaining, defender Steve Farmer made his long-awaited Hednesford debut as he came on to replace Screaton, with Starbuck pushing the big defender forwards in search of a late equaliser

In the final minute of the game, substitute Meakin-Richards went closest to sending the game into extra time as his header from a deflected Sheppard free-kick looped upwards and towards goal, only to land on the roof of Woodhall's net

Halesowen held with relative ease to see them into the next round of the F.A. Trophy, where they will host Northern Premier League Division One Clitheroe in a couple of weeks time. For the Pitmen, their cup runs have all ended before we have even reached November and allows them to focus on their fine recent form in the UniBond Premier League, which they return to on Saturday with a home game against struggling Frickley Athletic

Halesowen Town: Woodhall, Warner, Haywood, Preston, Knight, Williams ©, Cowley (Smith 86), Lewis, Szewczyk, Beckett, Forsdick       Subs Unused: Dowdall, Cooper, Brindley, Gayle

Hednesford Town: Young, Adams, Henshaw, White ©, Marshall, Screaton (Farmer 86), Pedro (Meakin-Richards 45), Sheppard, Alexander, Dyer, Hadland      Subs Unused: Brown, Ellis, Dudley