Northern Premier League Midlands – Saturday, 9th April 2022
Halesowen Town 3 Bedworth United 0
Second placed Halesowen reeled off their third straight win after overcoming stubborn resistance from mid-table Bedworth, writes David Johnson.
Prior to the kick-off, a minute’s applause was held in memory of former player and FA Vase hero Geoff Moss, who passed away recently, aged 65. The game was attended by many of his team-mates from the 1980s era.
Yeltz manager Paul Smith was pleased with the result. “It took us a while to break down a stubborn side but we kept our shape well. It was crucial to get the right result again and our third straight victory.”
A 2nd minute Liam Lockett free-kick was missed by two unmarked Bedworth strikers at the far post and an 8th minute free-kick from Halesowen’s Richard Gregory was saved low down by giant Bedworth goalkeeper Sam Lomax. After a couple of corners each, Gregory then turned his marker in the penalty area after 29 minutes but blazed over the bar. At the other end, Ryan Nesbitt struck over the Yeltz bar in the 34th minute.
The hard-working Greenbacks made it difficult to create chances but Halesowen gradually wore down the opposition after a slow and nervy start to the game. The Yeltz finally created a clear 38th minute chance when Kyle Finn found Simeon Cobourne down the middle and he lobbed over goalkeeper Lomax only for the ball to rebound back off the post.
Halesowen eventually found a 42nd minute breakthrough after Cobourne’s legs were clipped just inside the penalty area. Gregory’s spot-kick was saved low down to his right by Lomax but GREGORY was on hand to beat two defenders to the rebound and poke home from close range. Two minutes later Lomax made another good save from Gregory.
Just after the interval Robbie Bunn picked up a loose ball to shoot just wide and at the other end a low shot from Harry Wakefield was saved low down by home goalkeeper Dan Platt.
GREGORY grabbed his second goal in the 59th minute by confidently converting Halesowen’s second penalty after McKauley Manning was pulled down as he surged into the penalty area.
Kieran Morris then nodded Bunn’s 71st minute free-kick just wide.
Bedworth were reduced to nine men by two red cards in the latter stages. Ryan Moore was first to be dismissed for his 83rd minute foul on Bunn and he was followed just three minutes later by Richard Blythe for his clumsy challenge on Manning.
The Yeltz added a third goal in the 90th minute when substitute Ahmed Ali set MANNING free to skip into the left of the penalty area and plant the ball into the bottom, far corner with a great finish.
Halesowen Town: Dan Platt; Jack Holmes (Josh Ezewele 88), McKauley Manning, Kieran Morris, Paul McCone (c), Rob Evans, Kyle Finn, Robbie Bunn, Simeon Cobourne (Michael Taylor 81), Richard Gregory, Josh Hawker (Ahmed Ali 77). Subs Not Used: Nat Kelly, Chris Lait.
Bedworth United: Sam Lomax; Ryan Moore, Luke Rowe, Elliot Parrott (Ishmael Dawson 54 (Jack Wells 81)), Kyle Barnett (c), Owen Bennett, Harry Wakefield, Reece Blackmore, Ryan Nesbitt, Liam Lockett, Richard Blythe. Subs Not Used: Eesa Sawyers, Ethan Baynham.
Referee: Gareth Davis Attendance: 863
Booked: Blythe (27), Rowe (70)
Sent Off: Moore (83), Blythe (86)
‘Tulleys Print’ HTFC Man of the Match selected by Tulleys Print: Richard Gregory
Non-League Paper Man of the Match: Richard Gregory