Yeltz 1 Havant 0
08 February 2003
Although we're still in big trouble, it's essential we pick up points against other teams at the bottom (and there are loads of them) especially at The Grove. Today we did just that with a 1-0 victory over Havant through an early Leroy May goal. Full details in DJ's match report .
We're still 20th in the table with Weymouth winning as well, but we're now only 4 points from safety so it's still all to play for.
There's been even more movement in the transfer market, with Ross Collins leaving (to the end of the season at least) and Lee Williams coming in from Cheltenham. Ross has been a fantastic servant for the club and it's a real shame to have to let him go, but let's hope all the recent signings can help us stay up.
On Tuesday we travel to Bedworth in the Quarter Final of the League Cup, and then next Saturday we go to Crawley in a rearranged league game.
Match Report from DJ
Halesowen Town: Clarke; Colwell, Charlton, Skidmore, Collins, Stone, Williams, Ashby, L. May (Leadbeater 77), McHugh, Hines. Unused Subs: Master, Medou-Otye, Smith, Trainer
Havant & Waterlooville: Kerr, Masson, Ferrett (Leworthy 77), Davis, Hall, Hanson, Blake, Hambley, Howe (Hale HT), Taylor, Haughton. Unused Subs: Turner, Fennemore, S. May
Referee: M. Weaver (Bearwood) Attendance: 429 Booked: Skidmore (19) Sponsors Man of the Match: Gavin Stone
Halesowen notched an important first league win of 2003 to boost their chances of escaping from the relegation-danger zone.
After an even opening Leroy MAY scored the early decisive goal in the 13th minute when he pulled away from his marker to power a header past goalkeeper Aaron Kerr from a Lee Williams cross. Five minutes later Jason Ashby set up Stuart Skidmore to side-foot over the bar from the edge of the area. Skidmore then received a booking for a foul on Robert Howe after being dispossessed, but Chris Ferrett blasted the free-kick against the Halesowen defensive wall. On-loan Cheltenham midfielder Lee Williams made all the difference with Halesowen continuing to push for goals and Kerr dived to save at his feet in the 22nd minute as he ran into the box on the heavily sanded surface.
Havant won their first corner on the half-hour with Tim Clarke only punching out for Alec Masson to drive the ball towards goal but Les Hines made a crucial goal-line clearance. Kerr then kept out a 25-yard drive from the impressive Williams and Alec Masson cleared from Ashby after Richard Colwell played the ball into the area. Ten minutes before the break Gavin Stone made a timely headed clearance when Tim Hambley sent in a dangerous ball towards his fellow strikers.
Halesowen sat back to soak up the Havant pressure at the start of the second period and they almost paid the price. Ferrett dug in a 50th minute left-wing cross that fell invitingly for James Taylor but the normally lethal striker miscued from close range allowing Tim Clarke to recover and save. Out of form Warren Haughton then skipped past the Halesowen defence to force a corner that Clarke gratefully grabbed at the second attempt.
On the hour Kerr produced a reflex save to deny May's header from a Williams corner and six minute later Ashby sprung the offside trap but he hesitated too long with Christian Hanson able to clear the danger.
With Halesowen needing to hang on to their slender lead Stone tripped Haughton on the edge of the box in the 73rd minute after Asa Charlton lost the ball, but Ferrett hit the free-kick weakly at Clarke. The visitors then gambled by introducing 40-year striker David Leworthy and they almost found an equaliser ten minutes from time when Neil Davis beat Clarke to a Gareth Hall chip but the ball fell inches wide.
The Yeltz kept possession in the dying moments and should have added a second goal in the final minute when Ashby set up substitute Richard Leadbeater but Kerr made a fine double save from five yards.