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Hyde FC 1 Harriers 3


Date: 18-04-14gif Venue: Ewen Fieldsgif att: 531gif away fans: tba
A Good Friday for Harriers, but it was no Hyde-ing

gif Report by Harriershane
Harriers travelled to Ewen Fields to take on Hyde on a sun soaked Friday afternoon, but they were made to sweat by their tenacious hosts who, having been long relegated, had nothing to lose.

Manager Gary Whild named an unchanged starting eleven with Kyle Storer taking his place on the substitutes bench, replacing the ill Nick Wright.  The game started in a rather tentative manner, with both sides having some half chances, but not testing either custodian.  After only six minutes Amari'i Bell got the breakthrough for the Harriers.  Good work from Michael Gash down the right hand side allowed the frontman to cut the ball back for Bell who finished with aplomb.

To their credit Hyde refused to lie down and allow Harriers to just boost their goal difference at will, and began to pile forward with intent.  The Harriers could have doubled their lead twice in the twenty minutes that followed, but Gash was denied by a superb tackle from a covering defender on both occasions.

Hyde's equaliser eventually came just after the half hour mark, and fully deserved it was.  Regan Walker, who had looked lively throughout, weaved his way through a posse of defenders before firing off a deflected effort.  From the resultant corner Harriers' failure to clear the second ball was punished as Adam Blakeman curled a good effort past an apparently unsighted Danny Lewis.

Moments later Adam Thurston fizzed an effort narrowly wide from the edge of the box in what was to be the last attacking moment of note in the half.  As the players headed into the dressing room for half time the Harriers travelling contingent were left to reflect on an abject opening to the game.
  HT: 1 - 1
Whatever Gary Whild said to his charges at half time appeared to have worked as Harriers faced a potentially season-defining forty five minutes.  Straight from the kick off Michael Gash once again had some joy but fired a shot over the bar.

As the game moved into the fiftieth minute Nathan Blissett appeared to pick up an impact injury and he was swiftly withdrawn with Amari Morgan-Smith coming on in his place.  Five minutes later skipper Kyle Storer replaced Jack Byrne, who was booked in the first half, as Harriers tried to assert themselves in midfield in a game that was simply going through the motions.  The game was soon to change though.

Whild's last throw of the dice was the introduction of Adrian Cieslewicz, replacing the hard-working Callum Gittings.  Immediately the former Wrexham winger jinked past a couple of defenders and pulled the ball back for AMS who forced a smart save out of Hyde keeper Chris Kettings.

The Harriers began to look more threatening, keeping the Hyde defence and Kettings goal under attack, but the hosts resistance was soon broken.  The seventy fourth minute saw the goal that the Harriers fans behind the goal had been waiting for when AMS played the ball in behind for an attacker to chase.  That man was Michael Gash who came inside the defender, leaving him on the floor before firing a vicious effort which the keeper got a hand to, but despite the best efforts of the man on the line, his attempted clearance only found the inside of the post.  The goal has, rather harshly, gone down as a Darren Thornton own goal.

This gave Harriers the impetus they required as AMS put the Carpetmen 3-1 up and gave the scoreline a more comfortable feel.  A long ball forward from the back was not dealt with by the defender, whose header back to his goalkeeper was poor.  As Kettings rushed out, AMS touched the ball past the keeper, checked inside an onrushing defender before firing venomously home before celebrating gleefully in front of the Harriers faithful.

It was obvious by now that Hyde had tired and Harriers finished strongly with both Gash and Morgan-Smith firing decent efforts over.

It could, and probably should, have been more convincing in terms of the actual performance but, at this stage of the season, the most important thing is the win no matter how it comes.  With Gateshead being held to a draw at home to Southport, courtesy of a late equaliser for the Heed, Whild's charges are in position to pounce on any slip ups as they are just three points outside of the play offs.
  FT: 1 - 3

 Goal for Hyde: Blakeman 35
 Goals for Harriers: Bell 6, Thornton 74 (og), Morgan-Smith 76

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Hyde FC  goals   subs   cards      Harriers  goals   subs   cards 
Kettings     Lewis  
Day     L Vaughan  
Blakeman gif     Demetriou  
Thornton gif  (og) gif     Bell gif  
Clark     Grimes  
Tomsett     Dunkley  
Poole gif     Byrne gif
Brown gif     O'Keefe  
Thurston     Gash  
Walker     Blissett gif  
Hughes     Gittings gif  
SUBS:         SUBS:      
Pollard gif - 77     N Vaughan  
Kirby gif - 55     Storer gif - 55  
Lazenbury gif - 90     Verma  
McNiven     Morgan-Smith gif gif - 50  
Fitzgerald     Cieslewicz gif - 65  

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