Second Round Qualifying
Harrowby United 4
St Andrews 1
Harrowby United welcomed St Andrews, from the Aylestone area of Leicester, to Dickens Road on Saturday.
The ‘Saints’ started the game brightly and a move down the right in the second minute brought the game’s first scoring opportunity as the ball was moved inside to Mason Brown who wasted the chance, shooting over the bar in a good position.
The visitors then enjoyed a period of good possession but failed to turn it into chances until the 22nd minute when a through-ball found Kurtes Whyte out wide who played a low cross into the penalty area, which caused indecision in the Arrows defence. The ball found its way to Ennis Fyffe who curled a shot inches past the right hand post.
Only a minute later, Harrowby created their first chance when a long ball was bravely headed forward by Richemone Sylla who took a kick to the head but ran on to the ball and fired a shot narrowly wide.
Saints took the lead just before the half hour mark when Harrowby again conceded possession cheaply in midfield and the ball was played out to the right. The low cross that followed was picked up by by Lewis Hill just inside the penalty area and he fired a low right foot shot into the net, giving Arrows custodian Sam Andrew no chance.
St Andrews ended the half in the ascendancy, Hill bringing a good save from Andrew who pushed away a shot from the edge of the box. Two minutes from the break, Kyrie Foster outpaced Arrows full back Felix Hogg before crossing for Brown who was denied a goal by a superb block tackle from Tawanda Bilson.
Both sides huffed and puffed at the start of the second half without creating anything clear cut.
Debutant Jurelle Phillip replaced Joe Briers for the Arrows and the change immediately inspired an equaliser. Harrowby played a dangerous ball into the penalty area which the visitors failed to clear and Joel Carta took advantage to fire a rasping right foot shot through a crowd of players and into the net.
The leveller took the stuffing out of a tired looking St Andrews and they conceded a second in the 64th minute when Glyn Cotton, supporting the attack from midfield, found space in the penalty area to slot the ball past Saints keeper Liam Richards.
From this point it was all Harrowby and Cotton brought a smart save from Richards, diving low to his left in the 67th minute. Five minutes later, a poor back pass from Fyffe was intercepted by Arrows’ Sam Grouse who took the ball on before his low shot was saved by Richards.
Harrowby’s third goal arrived after 75 minutes when a long ball forward was flicked on by substitute Luke Peberdy to a suspiciously offside-looking Grouse. The Arrows live-wire raced in on goal and fired a low shot which was parried by Richards but knocked into the net by Bruno Holden from the edge of the six yard box.
With a minute left on the clock, Harrowby added a fourth when a long ball was chased down by Holden who retrieved the ball out wide and dragged it back to Grouse who smashed home to secure victory for the Arrows.
In the end it was an emphatic win for the Harrowby after a much improved second half performance which was rewarded with a place in the next round, away at Rugby Town.
Harrowby United: Andrew, Currall, Hogg, Bilson, Miles (c), Briers (Phillip 60), Carta, Cotten, Sylla (Peberdy 69), Holden (Wroughton 89), Grouse. Sub not used: Whyley.
l Harrowby United are at home against Huntingdon Town on Saturday, kick-off 3pm.