FOOTBALL: Harrowby United triumph over local rivals
United Counties League
Harrowby United 3
Sleaford Town 2
Harrowby responded with a great team performance against local rivals Sleaford Town after the disappointment of Saturday’s result.
Sleaford started the strongest on Tuesday night with Harrowby struggling to get out of their half and a few rash tackles gifted the visitor’s free kicks in dangerous positions, but Drury in the Harrowby goal was up to the task.
Slowly Harrowby settled and started to take control of the game and almost took the lead after 15 minutes when Harper’s pass found Callum Wilkinson in space but his powerful effort narrowly missed the target. The Arrows were again unlucky five minutes later after Ryan Parnell’s strong run and cross went agonisingly past the outstretched toe of Liam Harper with the keeper beaten.
Harrowby were now well in control but could not break down a well organised Sleaford defence. With five minutes of the half remaining, Harrowby got the reward for their hard work when Jack Whyley fired home from close range after some good work from Bolland and Parnell.
It got even better for the Arrows in time added on when Harper again found Wilkinson and this time his powerful shot from the edge of the box gave the Sleaford keeper no chance.
Sleaford started the second half well, forcing a string of corners but Harrowby’s defence held strong.
Harrowby should have gone three up on 50 minutes when Bolland’s header narrowly missed the target.
Four minutes later, Sleaford reduced the deficit after a goalmouth scramble. Harrowby captain Billy Stubbs was unlucky when a driven clearance hit his leg before passing Drury in the Harrowby goal.
Sleaford’s joy was short-lived when three minutes later Parnell picked up the ball on the half way line. His powerful run took him to the by-line and his pinpoint pass found Harper on the back post to again restore Harrowby’s two goal cushion.
The visitors then pushed hard and Drury was made to work hard keeping out efforts from Oliver and Bridge. With 10 minutes to go, the visitors gave themselves hope when Oliver fired home after a period of sustained pressure.
In the final 10 minutes, Sleaford pressed hard for an equaliser but Harrowby stood firm to take the bragging rights in the season’s first local derby.
Newport Pagnell 10
Harrowby United 0
Harrowby United felt the pain of a nightmare performance against a very good Newport Pagnell outfit on Saturday.
Getting off to a bad start, Harrowby fell behind in the fourth minute when Dave Baker fired home from 20 yards and before they had time to settle they were two down when Greg Ling tapped home after a goalmouth scramble.
Newport midfield dominated play and on 20 minutes virtually sealed the game when Dominic Lawless tapped home after a good interchange with Ling.
Harrowby then created a couple of chance of their own. Firstly Matthew Clarke fired over the bar from the edge of the box and then Joe Elliot forced a good save by the Swans keeper. But just when Harrowby had thought they had weathered the storm Bollond was unlucky when his attempted block deflected past spencer to give Newport a 4-0 lead at half time.
If Harrowby thought the first half was hard work, the second half turn out to be worse and they conceded a fifth in the 54th minute when Ling scored his second. Dominic Lawless then hit three unstoppable shots from outside the box, taking his tally to four and Newport’s to eight. Two further strikes from Smith and Koriya ended a nightmare day for the Arrows.