Football: Harlow triumph in cup

Lifestyle / Mon 5th Sep 2016 pm30 05:22pm

FA Cup 1st Preliminary Round

Harlow Twn 3 v 1 Romford

IN a poor opening period, Romford went ahead with a close finish after the Hawks failed to clear a free kick.

Harlow hit back through Alex Read’s finish, before the striker bagged a second minutes later with a fine finish. Piers Wixon sealed the win for Harlow with a third goal in the final minute of the game.

Layne Eadie went close in the first minutes when he burst into the opposition area, but his low shot grazed the post.

Charlie Portway then played ex-Harlow striker Chinedu McKenzie in behind the defence, but David Hughes was quickly out of his box to clear the danger.

Much of the early possession was in favour of the Hawks, but they failed to make significant inroads into the Romford defence in what was a dire first half from both sides.

Jared Small twice found himself with space to shoot at the back post, but on both occasions he couldn’t keep his shot under the crossbar.

On 33 minutes the deadlock was broken with the first shot on target. A free kick was put into the Harlow penalty area, and with the defence making a hash of the clearance, it crept through to Matt Toms to poke home from close range.

HT: Harlow Town 0-1 Romford

Harlow improved as the game went on. Soon after the break, Craig Pope’s header put Jared Small behind the defence, but a magnificent reaction save from Stephen Reynolds tipped the ball over the bar.

Chinedu McKenzie once again managed to get behind the defence, but once again David Hughes was on his toes to speedily get off his line and save at the striker’s feet.

With just over an hour played, the Hawks equalised. A long ball forward from the Harlow back line was headed beyond the defence by Lawrence Yiga for Alex Read to run on to. Read deftly lobbed over onrushing Romford ‘keeper Reynolds to restore parity.

Three minutes later Read had his second. Jared Small, who terrorised the Romford defence in the second period, nutmegged his marker to create space for the cross. Read controlled and turned in the box to rifle into the roof of the net.

Jared Small was inches away from getting on the scoresheet himself, when Layne Eadie overlapped on the left and delivered a low cross. The ball evaded the visiting defence and the outstretched leg of the Harlow winger.

As the game entered injury time, the visitors threw caution to the wind. Romford stopper Reynolds went up to attack a corner, but the ball was gathered by David Hughes and Harlow swiftly turned defence into attack. Mario Noto streaked up the pitch before playing in Piers Wixon, who chipped over the Romford defender scampering back and into the empty net to seal the win.

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