Southend 2 Kidderminster Harriers 1 - Report
A late Callum Powell goal broke the spirit of Kidderminster Harriers who had come from behind to cancel out Harry Cardwell’s 51st minute opener, but Amari Morgan-Smith’s equalizer with ten minutes remaining was not enough.
Russ Penn made two changes from the Harriers side that drew 0-0 with Maidenhead on Monday, Ashley Hemmings and Zak Brown replacing Keiran Phillips and Kai Lissimore who dropped to the bench, Reiss McNally being preferred to Alex Penny in defence who returned to the bench after serving his one match ban for the dismissal at Ebbsfleet.
Southend started brightly as Harriers organized themselves well in defending the space although Dan Mooney was left free on the edge of the area but he fired a left footed effort over the bar.
Harriers responded with Jack Lambert seeing his effort deflected for a corner, the same player drilling a 35 yard free kick wide of Collin Andeng Ndi’s left hand post after Kensdale had fouled Ashley Hemmings.
There followed a midfield battle with neither side creating the chance to excite the 5402 spectators inside Roots Hall, although Amari Morgan-Smith continued to pose problems for the home defence and on 42 minutes he looped a long range header goalwards from Dibble’s long clearance only for Andeng Ndi repositioned himself to make a comfortable save to keep the scoreline goalless at half time.
Harry Cardwell settled the home fans nerves with a clinical finish to break the deadlock six minutes after the break, Noor Husin controlled the ball down the right before setting up the home striker and Cardwell lifted the ball past Dibble for his fifth of the campaign.
Harriers looked to fight back and with ten minutes remaining the visitors drew level, Joe Leesley lifted a right wing cross that Gerry McDonagh turned into the path of fellow substitute Barry Maguire whose first time shot rebounded from the base of the right hand upright and Amari Morgan-Smith followed up to bring Harriers level.
Seven minutes of added time was applied and in the second of these it was the home side who forged ahead again, Demetriou’s centre struck Cardwell and substitute Callum Powell cooly slotted home the second goal for the home side.
Harriers were denied a late penalty when Krystian Pearce was laid out by the late arriving Andeng Ndi but his header went narrowly wide and despite protests the referee gave the home side a goal kick.
Southend United: Andeng Ndi, Bridge (Demetriou 67), Cardwell, Fonguck (Coker 87), Husin, Kensdale, Miley, Mooney (Powell 71), Ralph, Scott-Morris, Taylor. Subs Not Used: Wood.
Harriers: Dibble, Richards, Pearce, Knight-Percival, McNally (McDonagh 77), Leesley, Brown (Maguire 60), Lambert (Lissimore 86), Oxlade-Chamberlain, Hemmings, Morgan-Smith. Subs Not Used: Penny, Phillips.