BAKER BURNS GINGERBREADS

Yeltz 1 Grantham 0

11 September 2004

Saw that excellent headine on the Southern league website and couldn't resist using it - especially as spirits are very high now we're after a late winner by Lewis earned all three points against Grantham. See for full details.

On Saturday we start our FA Cup campaign away at , a Northern Counties East Premier team based near Derby. They've only one point from their first five games, so hopefully we can get through (which is important given the prize money available in the competition).

I'm still on my travels - with most of the Jolly Boys at Poolio's wedding in Ireland - so updates to the site will still be patchy until after the weekend I'm afraid.

Match Report from DJ

Halesowen Town: Taylor; Cooper (Skidmore 84), Haywood, Preston, Pope, Jones, Cowley, Moore (Steane 62), Burgess, Baker, Forsdick. Unused Subs: Danks, Grocutt.

Grantham Town: Zaccardi; Wooding, Hallows, Francis, Reddington, Robinson, Darby, Clifford (McGowan 87), Collins, Huckerby (Commons 66), Smith (Connell 66). Unused Subs: Sutton, Standage

Referee: S. Allon (Wigan) Attendance: 428 Bookings: Francis (40)

High-flying Halesowen moved back into second-place in the table with Lewis Baker's late goal breaking the resistance of mid-table Grantham who have now lost on their last 8 visits to the Grove.

After the excitement of previous home games the miserly Grantham central defensive partnership of Stuart Reddington and Dave Robinson proved difficult to break down.

Alex Cowley made an exciting run down the right-wing from his own half in the 7th minute but the Grantham defence cleared. Clever play from Simon Forsdick then let in Jason Moore and although his effort was blocked, Dave Haywood flashed an 18-yard shot just wide. Grantham then went close on 14 minutes when a cross from veteran forward Darren Collins fell for Scott Huckerby in space, but the out-of-form forward blasted high from 15 yards. A Dan Jones header then let in Collins on 22 minutes but Jones made a fine retrieving tackle on the edge of his own penalty area. Halesowen remained generally on top and a 32nd minute half-volley from Richard Burgess was caught by visiting goalkeeper Mario Ziccardi.

Grantham enjoyed a good spell before the interval with a 35th minute free-kick from Brett Darby drifting over goalkeeper Chris Taylor before bouncing back off the far post. Darby followed up to deliver another left-wing cross and Fabien Smith bundled the ball home over Taylor but the effort was disallowed for a push by Robinson.

After an excellent week for the Yeltz, a disappointing crowd of only 428 saw the visitors continue to close down the Yeltz in the second half although Forsdick met a 55th minute Cowley cross with a fierce volley and Ziccardi pushed the ball away for a corner. At the other end, Taylor collected a 57th minute header from Reddington and two minutes later a Darby cross was hooked goal-bound by Collins with Taylor producing a fine reflex save. Steve Pope headed a deep 68th minute cross from Jones wide and on 70 minutes substitute Darren Connell met a Dominic Hallows cross with Taylor again saving for a corner.

Substitute Ben Steane found the net for Halesowen on 71 minutes but the referee disallowed his strike for a previous foul in a goalmouth scramble. Burgess just failed to capitalise on a 76th minute mistake from Ziccardi and in the 80th minute Haywood broke free from defence but his shot was deflected away. Taylor made another good save to deny Collins in the 82nd minute from a good through ball from Darby and Reddington nodded a corner wide a minute later.

BAKER finally cooked up a late winner to break the Gingerbreads in the 87th minute by hitting home from 12 yards when Burgess found space on the right and pulled the ball back into his path.