Football: Harlow fall to superior Lowestoft

Football / Wed 18th Jan 2017 at 06:42pm

Harlow Town 1 vs 2 Lowestoft Town- Match Report

By Luke Henry

AFTER their narrow 2-1 disappointment against York City on Saturday Afternoon In the FA Trophy, Harlow welcomed Lowestoft Town to the Harlow Arena on Tuesday evening, hoping for their first win of the year, against a side that was level on 38 points prior to kick off and looking to change a three match winless run.

This game was subject to an immediate fast start from the visitors as they scored first within the opening three minutes of the match. A inswinging corner was delivered right into the path of dangerman Jake Reed who flicked a header past Hughes and into the back of the net for his fifteenth of the campaign. A great start for Lowestoft.

That goal had seemed to have given the away side the impetus early on and were really dictating the opening stages. Christopher Henderson was next to try his luck, however his shot dragged wide of the right hand post. It took Harlow a quarter of an hour to pose any real foothold in the game, and were probing without creating anything at all. The danger was coming from the visitor’s counter attack. The combination of strikers Jake Reed and Shaun Bammant were causing the Harlow defence problems, who were looking shaky every time the ventured forward. Although they looked dangerous on the counter, they could’ve gone two goals up in the most bizarre of circumstances. A cross from the left by winger Frazer Blake Tracy was whipped and found it’s way onto the head of Harlow skipper Craig Pope, who miscued his header and directed in goal wards, forcing Hughes into a point blank reflex save, before moments later, Shaun Bammant, the number 10 skipped past Sonko far too easily leaving himself one on one with Hughes. The striker couldn’t keep his shot down as it cannoned off the crossbar and went out for a goal kick. That was a big chance with twenty minutes gone.

Referee Simon Finnigan was next to be at the centre of attention as the ref looked to have deemed Layne Eadie not to have handled the ball in the penalty box midway through the first half on 25 minutes. Despite the Lowestoft protest’s, the referee was unmoved from his position and waved play on. Fabion Simms arrived with a shot in the 28th minute, but couldn’t keep his shot down and skimmed a volley high, wide and not very handsome after the ball broke to him, following a blocked shot from Alex Read. Moments later, it should’ve and could’ve been two for the visitors. Skipper Ross Jarvis produced a lovely flick on the top of the Harlow defence to allow Shaun Bammant through on goal beating the offside trap from the left angle of the goal. His crisp drive beat keeper Hughes all ends up, however it skimmed the post and out for the goal kick. That’s the post and the bar now this striker has hit, you would think the next chance was destined for the corner. During the first half period, Harlow were lacklustre, containing numerous subdued performances within the starting eleven. The set pieces came to nothing and it was clear to see that Harlow’s cup excursions at the weekend were taking it’s toll on the home side. A rare foray forward saw Craig Pope’s header comfortably gathered by Jake Jessup signalling the end of the first 45.

The opening exchanges within the second half showed Harlow slightly better in possession but weren’t probing as such and creating any clear cut chances. The first quarter of the second half saw opportunities on goal non existent with the tempo dropping significantly. Danny Chapman looked to his bench for reinforcements, sending on Mario Noto in the hope of the midfielder creating some sort of spark for the home team. They almost found an equaliser on 65 Minutes out of nothing. Hesitation in the box presented Khale Da Costa with a chance, however he poked over the bar from the close range. That chance proved costly as it was 2-0 to the visitors in the 67th minute and who else but that man Jake Reed, the nemesis of Harlow Town. His fifth goal in 2 matches against the hawks, following the hattrick he grabbed earlier on in the season in the 4-0 victory and his sixteenth of the season looked to have settled this contest once and for all. Good work rate and strength down the left from Shaun Bammant the striker, whose low cross was converted by Jake Reed after good movement from the forward, allowing him to peel away from the Harlow backline and tuck the ball home. The game plan from the away side has been carried out expertly throughout the game.

Harlow have been forced back while in possession many times throughout the match, which was down to the visitors’ hunger and work rate off the ball. Half chance for Harlow on 77 minutes, the returning Junior Dadson, making his comeback to the starting eleven after a long term injury flicked a header well wide of the target. Although, they weren’t at the races for the majority of the game, they did find a custom goal out of nothing. Harlow have never failed to score this season at home, so it wasn’t a surprise to see them pull one back. Skipper Craig Pope’s ball into the box was expertly diverted into the top corner by the head of Fabion Simms. Harlow had four minutes to find an equaliser, back to the walls stuff now for Lowestoft. Entering additional time, dangerman for Harlow Alex Read who was chasing his 150th goal in Harlow colours nearly found it but drew a good save from Jake Jessup at his near post, the first real save he had to make all game in truth.

It wasn’t to be and Harlow couldn’t force an equaliser and for only the third time this season were beaten at home. Credit towards Lowestoft it has to be said, were much better and sharper all across the pitch and Jake Reed’s double ensured they left the Harlow Arena with three points. Saturday’s cup exploits was a factor tonight in Harlow’s game as they were second best for large parts of the encounter, and were lucky to be only one down in the first half. They now draw their attention to Saturday’s home fixture against Tonbridge Angels, while Lowestoft travel to Folkestone Invicta.

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