Late strike by students spells disaster for Hexham
Published at 07:38, Wednesday, 06 March 2013
A LATE goal sunk Hexham as they finished on the receiving end of a seven goal thriller.
The Tyne Valley team warmed up for tomorrow’s Minor Cup semi-final with New Fordley with a 4-3 home defeat at the hands of Newcastle University, the students claiming all three points with an 88th minute winner.
With Hexham one of the few local football games to beat the snowy conditions, there was a large crowd at Wentworth Leisure Centre.
And the crowd was treated to a real topsy turvy tussle, the end-to-end entertainment on show warming up those that stood through the blizzards.
Similar to the previous week, Hexham started slow and fell behind after just eight minutes when a low cross was deflected past goalkeeper Sean Heads after the hosts handed over possession unnecessarily.
With the heavy snow affecting both teams, Hexham’s mood lifted as the snow clouds cleared as they found an equaliser.
Liam Heenan was beaten to the ball in the corner by the Newcastle full back. His pass to goalkeeper Chris Pudner seemed routine enough, but the ball rolled over his foot and trickled over the line.
The howler was Pudner’s only mistake of the day as he pulled off a string of good saves to keep the home side at bay later in the game.
The goalkeeper’s error was not the only example of bad defending as Hexham showed they were capable of it too, a series of errors allowing Thomas Stapleton the time and space to shoot past the bemused Heads in the Hexham goal.
With the snow no longer falling, Hexham planned to regroup during the break and they were on level terms again shortly after the restart.
Within five minutes, a tremendous run to the byeline by Matty Blackith resulted in him pulling the ball back across the face of the goal where Scott Coates dispatched the ball into the net.
Hexham then enjoyed their best spell of the game but found Pudner in the mood to make up for his earlier mistake, making several top class saves.
It looked a matter of time before the hosts found the vital goal. However, Newcastle posed a threat of their own on the counter attack.
Paul McLean came to Hexham’s rescue with a superb last ditch tackle, but the academics did find a third goal with nine minutes remaining.
Catching the hosts out at the back, a long ball out of defence was flicked on to Stapleton whose pace outdid the Hexham rearguard and he slotted the ball home for his second of the day.
The late drama continued and Hexham restored parity for the third time on 85 minutes, Coates’ corner met by Jamie Peel who rose to power a brilliant header past Pudner.
There was a cruel twist in the tale for the home side though, when substitute Jake Sailsbury converted a right wing cross with just two minutes left on the clock to earn three points for the students and cause huge disappointment for the home side
Published by http://www.hexhamcourant.co.uk