Hitchin Town 2:2 St Neots Town FC
Match
2
Hitchin Town 2 : 2
St Neots Town FC
Monday 14 August, 2017 19:45

Southern League Premier Division     

HITCHIN TOWN       2        ST NEOTS TOWN        2          

St Neots got their season up and running with an important point from their midweek visit to Hitchin.   Having failed to find any real first half rhythm they fell behind just before the break but the introduction of recently signed Kyron Wiltshire as a second half substitute sparked the visitors into life and a late, late second goal earned them a share of the spoils.   Manager Matt Clements was philosophical after the match paying tribute to the resilience of his team who refused to accept defeat and kept going right to the end.   With injured players still undergoing further treatment Clements named an unchanged side for the visit but there were signs of some recovery with Liam McDevitt named as an unused substitute.   Hitchin has never been a happy hunting ground for St Neots who have now only recorded one victory in six visits. 

There was little goalmouth action in the first half hour as the sides strove to impose themselves.   An early snap shot by Scott Sinclair sailed over the bar and for the home side Liam Brooks should have done better with a header wide of target when he was left unmarked for a Kevan Cotter cross.   Both sides seemed reluctant to test the keepers from distance with an impression that they would rather try to walk the ball in.   However, the danger signs were showing for St Neots with Hitchin wide man Trey Charles terrorizing the St Neots back line at times.   He beat two defenders to fire over the bar after 32 minutes and then set up Lucas Kirkpatrick whose effort was also off target.   St Neots was convinced that there should have been a penalty award when Matt Foy was bundled over in the penalty area but the game was waved on and then a Danny Watson low cross was bravely claimed by Michael Johnson at the feet of Micky Hyem.   Then a minute before the break it was the home side who stamped their authority as Sinclair had to clear off the line from Charles conceding a corner kick and from the cross by Kirkpatrick, Liam Brooks lost his marker to slot home at the near post.

St Neots required an immediate response after half time but it never arrived and after being injured and booked for a mistimed tackled Ryan Horne was substituted by Kyron Wiltshire.   He made an almost immediate impact setting up Hyem whose shot was blocked.   At the other end a cross was deflected by Jack Bradshaw forcing an important full-length save from Emery and after 64 minutes St Neots were level when from a Hyem cross Kyron Wiltshire smashed home a low shot to level the scores.   However, parity only lasted for three minutes and then Ben Walster overlapped on the left and crossed to the near post where Liam Brooks produced almost a carbon copy of his first goal to put the home side in front again.  Walter then had a shot saved and Charles once again cut in to fire over the bar but the home side then seemed to have settled for their narrow advantage as they began to concentrate on defence.   Sensing their chance St Neots set up a series of attacks in the last ten minutes and Wiltshire went close to doubling his personal tally firing into the side netting with a low finish.   Then as added time ticked down and with only seconds remaining St Neots last gasp equalizer arrived as Emery launched a free kick from his own half into the Hitchin six yards box.   The ball was knocked onto the cross bar and from the rebound Danny Watson rose high to head a priceless equalizing goal.

 

 

 

  

St Neots:  Emery, Sinclair, Bradshaw, Horne, Wood, Parr, Foy, Clarke, Watson, Hyem, Williams (D).

Subs:  Wiltshire (for Horne 56), O’Malley (for Foy 76), McDevitt and Dean

Cards:  Parr (Y – 37 mins), Horne (Y – 54 mins)

 

Goals:  Wiltshire (64 mins), Watson (90+4 mins)

 

Hitchin:  Johnson, Cotter, Walster, Dowie, Goode, Wright, Clifton, Kirkpatrick, Brooks, Smith, Charles

 

Subs:  Donnelly (C) (for Kirkpatrick 60), McCaffrey (for Clifton 84), Syme and Donnelly (B)

 

Cards:   Smith (Y – 66 mins), McCaffrey (Y – 86 mins)

 

Goals:   Brooks 2 (44 & 67 mins)

 

Attendance: 520

Referee:  Paul Forrester (Luton)

 

 

John Walker