Halesowen Town 1 : 3 St Neots Town FC
Halesowen Town 1 : 3
St Neots Town FC
Saturday 19 October, 2013 15:00


FA Trophy First Round Qualifying


HALESOWEN TOWN      1       ST NEOTS TOWN        3


St Neots recorded their first ever away victory in the FA Trophy at their eighth attempt with a good all round display at Halesowen to make it two consecutive Cup victories in just five days.   Once again two of the three goals came from recent signings and there was a five star display in goal by Niall Conroy who was only beaten late in the game when the Northern Premier League (South) side claimed a consolation goal.   The three St Neots players requiring fitness tests after missing the Hitchin cup match, skipper Gavin Hoyte, Adrian Sear and Leon Hibbert were all able to be included in the starting line up and in an open attacking match that created a host of scoring chances at either end the visitors thoroughly deserved their place in the second qualifying round.


Conroy began his heroics as early as the fourth minute when Thomas Tonks sent a through pass inside the final visiting defender and the pacey Ben Haseley with only the keeper to beat tried to take the ball past him but Conroy timed his dive perfectly to get a hand to the ball and deflect it away from the forward.  St Neots then settled into a pattern with their three midfield players Hibbert, Sear and Davies dominating the game which resulted in efforts from Lewis Hilliard, Jay Davies and Jake Woolley all going close to opening their account.   Another Haseley effort was over the bar but after 24 minutes St Neots deservedly took the lead when from an inswinging Hilliard corner Dave Deeney rose to head home from the edge of the six yards box – his second goal in successive matches.   Home keeper Paul Evans then produced two good saves to deny Hilliard and Woolley and although Conroy had to be alert to save a Iyseden Christie snap shot St Neots looked comfortably in control.   They were further rewarded six minutes before the break when the hard working Jake Woolley sidestepped a defender close to the bye line to score the visitors’ second goal from a narrow angle – his third goal of the week.   Four minutes before the break as Halesowen tried to respond to this second setback Conroy produced two reaction saves from close range efforts as the St Neots defence got in a tangle and that was to prove an important moment for the visitors.


After balmy first half weather the restart was in torrential rain which got harder and more persistent as the half progressed.  It made the close passing game of St Neots very difficult to maintain and the home side scenting a chance pressed forward.   For a spell they dominated the game with a Haseley shot rebounding from a post in their first attack after half time.   Haseley then shot wide when well placed and defender Joe Hull up for a corner brought another important save from Conroy.   Halesowen brought on Aaron Griffiths, an additional attacker and his first touch was a deflected shot brilliantly tipped over the bar by Conroy who looked to be going the wrong way for the original shot.   A goal during this spell of pressure could have altered the course of the match but St Neots produced the perfect answer as Hilliard’s fifty yards cross field pass on the break found Ed Adjei on the left and he neatly passed his marker before beating Evans with a low shot after 79 minutes.  With ten minutes left St Neots seemed to relax and Halesowen deservedly snatched a late consolation goal when Hull headed firmly home from an Elliott Turner corner with just four minutes remaining.




St Neots: Conroy, Deeney, Dhillon, Ann, Hoyte, Hibbert, Hilliard, Sear, Woolley, Adjei, Davies

Subs:  Ford (for Hibbert 74 mins), Hurst (for Davies 80 mins), N’Guessan (for Hilliard 84 mins), Crowie and Taylor.

Cards: none

Goals: Deeney (24 mins),Woolley (39 mins), Adjei (79 mins)


Halesowen: Evans, Green, Meacham, MacKenzie, Hull, Tilt, Martin, Tonks, Christie, Haseley, Turner

Subs:  Penny (for Christie 39 mins), Gueyes (for MacKenzie 46 mins), Griffiths (for Meacham 64 mins), Kelly and Pearson.

Cards: Turner (Y – 27)

Goals: Hull (86 mins)


Attendance: 273


Referee:  Ollie Yates (Stoke-on-Trent))



John Walker