SOUTHERN LEAGUE DIVISION ONE CENTRAL
Colney Heath 1 St Neots Town 0
Bottom of the table Colney Heath recorded their first victory in twelve games at the expense of a hapless out-of-touch visiting St Neots side. In awful conditions on a less than perfect pitch neither side really managed to play with any rhythm or belief. It was therefore almost inevitable that a deciding goal would come from a mistake, and that came from the visitors after 51 minutes, when a badly mistimed tackle by defender Charlie Johnson brought down an opponent, and Kwon Hepburn stepped forward to net from the penalty spot. Subsequently St Neots pressed forward with great determination, but only once did they force home keeper into a serious save. Now they have gone almost five hours league football without scoring a goal so their problem that is simple to identify has sent them plummeting down the league table from fifth at the end of October to twelfth. With top of the table Berkhamsted the next visitors to the Premier Plus Stadium, things are unlikely to get any easier. With Ben Heal, Joe Rider and Callum Anderson still on the injured list, they were joined by Wynford Marfo serving his one match ban, but there was a return to the side for Kwai Marsh-Brown and Nehemiah Richard Noel after injury.
St Neots made a confident enough start dominating possession for the opening ten minutes without creating anything significant, but the home side quickly settled into the contest with Matthew Walsh seeing a shot deflected and defender Toby Byron up for a corner heading narrowly over the bar. Louis Chadwick was then forced to touch away a cross by Kwon Hepburn and the only reply from the visitors was a shot from Kyjuon Marsh-Brown easily gathered by the home custodian. His brother Kwai then found the side netting from distance and St Neots best first half effort came from the lively Kyjuon Marsh-Brown who saw his effort saved by the goalkeeper’s legs. Both sides looked happy to hear the half time whistle with the goalless score line a fair guide to the first forty-five minutes.
Upon the restart St Neots again looked positive as they had at the start of the match. Kyjuon Marsh-Brown once again led the way seeing a narrow-angled effort rebound from the far post and sending a second shot high over the crossbar. What proved to be the defining moment in the match was the Johnson mistimed tackle that gave Kwon Hepburn the chance to convert that penalty kick. For a spell after this setback St Neots seemed to lose their way as Max Jessop spurned an opportunity to extend the lead for the home side after a defensive error and Louis Chadwick had to dive bravely at the feet of Walsh to deny him a simple finish. St Neots made two substitutions in a bid to freshen their approach but despite dominating possession there was no finish until fifteen minutes from time when home keeper Tiernan Parker denied Kyjuon Marsh-Brown with a full-length parry – his only serious save. The sending-off of home defender Peter Mokwenye eight minutes from time for picking up his second booking gave the visitors a glimmer of hope but that was never to be realised.
This Afternoon’s Saints Supporters’ Man of the Match was awarded to Aaron Smith
St Neots Town: Chadwick, Wilson-Braithwaite, Smith, Abbott, Johnson, Barker, Cowling, Watkins, Richard-Noel, Kwai Marsh-Brown, Kyjuon Marsh-Brown
Subs: Milenge (for Abbott 64 mins), Sutton (For Wilson-Braithwaite 69 mins), Green (for Richard-Noel 88 mins) Clark, and Anthony.
Cards: Cowling (Y – 14 mins)
Colney Heath: Parker, Rahho, Mokwenye, Fitzgerald, Byron. Lovell, Hepburn, Jessop, Walsh, Nichols, Sawaneh
Subs: McShane (for Walsh 65 mins), Nimi (for Sawaneh 58 minutes), Laughton, and Knaggs.
Cards: Mokwenye (RED – 2 x Y 3 & 82 mins), Lovell (Y – 67 mins)
Goals: Hepburn (51 mins – pen)
Referee: Jamaal Horne