18.10.2008

F.A. Trophy 1st Qualifying Round

Hednesford Town

Dyer (3), (87), Barnett (71)

Quorn

Jenkins (25)

(1) 3

(1) 1

Attendance

MoTM

Current Form

Next Match

338

Tyrone Barnett

L L D W W L W W W W

Ilkeston Town (A) 25.10.08

The Pitmen made it safely through to Monday's draw for the next round of the F.A. Trophy courtesy of a competent win over a hard-working Quorn side from UniBond Division One

 

With no new injury worries ahead of the game, manager Dean Edwards went for the same side that had beaten Buxton in midweek to consolidate their place at the top of the UniBond Premier League table. He added Shane O'Reilly to the bench to make up the required five substitutes for this first qualifying round tie

Step four Quorn made their first-ever trip to Keys Park in what was only their fourth-ever game in the F.A. Trophy after first qualifying for the cup last season. They had beaten Woodley Sports 1-0 in the preliminary round to set up today's game with manager Gavin O'Toole naming ex-Hednesford pair Justin Jenkins and Sam Wood in his starting XI for the Division One South side

And what a start it was for the home side, as they swept into a third-minute lead. Ross Dyer made progress down the left-hand side after collecting a Tyrone Barnett flick-on, before driving the ball across the face of goal. Quorn keeper Craig Jones made a terrible mess of it all, allowing the ball to squirm under his body and find the far corner of the net

Dyer's confidence since finding his goalscoring form again was noticeable, as he used his pace to sprint away from the Quorn defence on eight minutes, beating the onrushing Jones as he did so. In his attempts to pull the ball back to his strike partner Barnett, he only found Quorn's Rory Squire, who cleared the ball away or a corner

Quorn were struggling to keep up with the pace of the Pitmen going forward, and Barnett was presented with another scoring opportunity after a flowing move involving Elliott Durrell and Anthony Maguire. Jones, on this occasion, was well placed to save at the foot of his near post

The visitors responded by putting together some neat passing moves inside the Pitmen's half, forcing the Hednesford defenders to deal with three corners in quick succession

Despite this, the Pitmen were still dominating the possession and creating better chances, and the deadly duo of Dyer and Barnett combined to put the Pitmen two up midway through the first half. A cross from Durrell found Dyer, who headed the ball back towards the front post, where Barnett was lurking. He managed to loop his foot around the ball and hook the ball into the corner of the net in typical poacher's style to score his ninth goal of the campaign

Quorn refused to lie down and accept their fate, and within five minutes got themselves back in the match. A long ball over the top found former Hednesford striker Justin Jenkins free, with the big striker given time to control the ball and shoot. Stuart Brock did brilliantly to block Jenkins' first effort, but could only parry the ball straight back to the man who never scored for the Pitmen, with Jenkins gleefully knocking home the rebound

Quorn had their tails up for a short spell after their goal and continued to ask questions of the Hednesford defence. Jenkins again managed to get enough time to shoot, but Brock's presence put him off and he fired over

Hednesford's second-half performance showed plenty of willingness, but the chances that came their way failed to kill off a resolute Quorn side. Barnett knew little of a miscued ball from Draper that hit him en route to goal and went wide of the target, followed minutes later by another chance for the Hednesford number nine that Jones saved at his feet

On came Adam Burley for the tiring Sam Hall on the hour mark, as Edwards looked to freshen up his side and grab a killer third goal

Mark Briggs tried his luck in front of goal on sixty-three minutes, firing straight at Jones from around the penalty spot after he had picked up a long throw from Tom Marshall

Dyer and Barnett both wasted good chances inside the area, with Jones saving from Dyer and Barnett heading well over the bar from Durrell's cross

Durrell was to see no more action, as he was taken off in favour of the combative Chad Sheppard. A few minutes later, Danny Harvey had to be replaced after suffering a dead leg with Scott Stamps coming on to replace the young centre-back

Burley almost opened his account for the Pitmen ten minutes from time, but Jones acrobatically tipped his header over the bar for a corner

Barnett went searching for his tenth goal of the season a minute later, beating the Quorn offside trap, but firing straight at Jones, rather than laying the ball off to either Dyer or Briggs

Quorn could have taken the game to a replay with five minutes to go, but Brett Darby missed the target with a rising shot that only just cleared Brock's crossbar

Any fears of a repeat of the Atherstone fiasco were allayed with three minutes left - in comical fashion. A Briggs cross to the back post looked to be drifting out of play, with no white shirt in the vicinity. Quorn's Anthony Marriott somehow managed to screw the ball onto his own post, before the ball hit Jones and ended up at the feet of the grateful Dyer, who had the simple task of poking the ball over the line

 A satisfying result and a potential banana skin neatly sidestepped by the Pitmen, who move into Monday's draw for the second qualifying round. They return to league action next weekend when they travel to Derbyshire to face Ilkeston Town in the clash of the top two in the UniBond Premier League with Edwards' men keen to extend their lead at the top of the table

Hednesford Town: Brock, Hall (Burley 60), Maguire, Gomes, Harvey (Stamps 75), Marshall, Briggs, Durrell (Sheppard 64), Barnett, Dyer, Draper ©      Subs Unused: Styche, O'Reilly

Quorn: Jones, Marriott, Peel, Wigley, Squire, North, Darby ©, Wood, Jenkins, Beard (Turner 71), White (Byrne 56)       Subs Unused: Keast, Shaw, Johnson

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