Halesowen 1-0 Chasetown - Report

Halesowen bounced back to winning ways following two away defeats and maintained their 100% home record with a narrow, battling victory over local rivals Chasetown.

Winning Yeltz joint-manager Craig Nicholls enthused “it’s a fantastic result for us after the disappointment of the last two weeks. We knew we’d have to dig in and fight for everything today and we were really up for the battle, particularly in the second half. Chasetown goalkeeper Curtis Pond made three man-of-the-match type saves.”

Liam Kirton put an early chance wide for Chasetown when free in the 8th minute and Simeon Cobourne earned a corner for the Yeltz a minute later.

But Halesowen found it hard to break down the resolute Chasetown defence and created few chances early on in an often feisty game. It was the visitors who had the better of early play as Kirton’s low 17th minute ball across the penalty area drifted into safety and Alex Melbourne put another ball along goal following a good move two minutes later. Home goalkeeper Dan Platt then collected Jayden Campbell’s cross and Kirton flashed another shot wide from goalkeeper Pond’s 35th minute long ball forward.

Halesowen’s first real chance came after 37 minutes when a weak back header from Jordan Evans let in Simeon Cobourne, but he fired high under pressure from Pond. Pond then grabbed Kieren Donnelly’s header from Brad Birch’s 42nd minute cross. Just before the interval, Pond made a great fingertip save after Richard Gregory was put free on goal while Kirton curled over the Yeltz bar.

At the start of the second period, Pond made a great point-blank save to turn the ball onto the bar and deny Jamie Insall after Gregory’s good work set up Cobourne to cross from the left. At the other end Platt beat the ball away from Mitch Botfield’s fierce 57th minute shot.

But the Yeltz gradually began to gain the upper hand as the game wore on and the Scholars survived a goalmouth scramble from Josh Ezewele’s 63rd minute corner. GREGORY then fired home the winner with a fierce shot from a 69th minute free-kick from 25 yards out, with the ball taking a strong deflection to deceive and beat Pond, after Danny O’Callaghan had brought down Donnelly. With Halesowen’s heads high, Pond made another good save to beat away another Gregory shot two minutes later and yet another Gregory effort forced a 72nd minute corner with chances from Kieran Morris and Nat Kelly cleared. Ezewele struck over the Chasetown bar following a good 77th minute run and the home side then dug in and defended doggedly to keep Chasetown at bay in the final minutes.

Halesowen’s next home game on Saturday 3rd December against Cambridge City has been moved forward to a 1pm kick-off due to the World Cup.

Halesowen Town: Dan Platt; Josh Ezewele, Oscar Tonge, Josh Quaynor, Kieran Morris (c), Nat Kelly, Kieran Donnelly, Brad Birch (McKauley Manning 62) , Jamie Insall, Richard Gregory (Shaquille Leachman-Whittingham 88), Simeon Cobourne. Subs Not Used: Rob Evans, Tom Turton, Taylor Homer.

Chasetown: Curtis Pond; Alex Melbourne, Jordan Evans, Kris Taylor, Ryan Wynter, Oli Hayward, Jayden Campbell (Devante Campbell 82), Mitch Botfield (Mitchel Candlin 78), Joey Butlin, Danny O’Callaghan (c), Liam Kirton. Subs Not Used: Thomas Unwin, Aaron Ashford.

Referee: Simon Kavanagh Attendance: 1,059

Booked: Birch (38), Botfield (38), Butlin (45), Platt (45), Quaynor (54)

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