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Hitchin Town 3 Sutton Coldfield Town 2

Tuesday, November 17 2009

Once again, Hitchin kept their fans on the edge of their seat as the Canaries made heavy weather of beating Sutton Coldfield.

Victory sent Hitchin three points clear at the top of the table, but it could have been a far more comfortable win if Colin Payne’s men had taken their first half chances – a familiar and frustrating tale.

Jamie Arlick and Richard Howell both had early chances before the Canaries opened the scoring on 28 minutes. A Sutton Coldfield defender handballed and Jamie Arlick scored from the penalty spot.

Hitchin had a purple patch after the goal and could have extended their lead through Luke Donnelly or Ieuan Lewis, but two minutes before the interval, Sutton Coldfield drew level with a well worked goal. A low cross by Matt Dodd was turned home by the ever dangerous Richard Ball.

But Sutton Coldfield barely had time to celebrate before the Canaries regained their lead. A cross came in from Howell and although Arlick got a touch of sorts, it was defender  Ed Booth who nudged the ball into the net.

Jeff Hammond, who came on as substitute on the hour, went close to adding to Hitchin’s tally, but he slid the ball past the post after good work by Lewis down the flank. Howell also had a long range effort that whistled past the post as Hitchin stepped up the pressure.

Hitchin scored again on 72 minutes when a long pass out of defence by Sam Pemberton landed well for Arlick, who nodded round David Clarke and he kept his nerve to score his second goal.

Hammond had another chance when he burst through, but he was denied by Clarke and then the diminutive striker set up Arlick, who headed over the bar.
Three minutes from time, Sutton Coldfield scored the best goal of the night, a spectacular volleyed overhead kick by Craig Marshall.

Hitchin Town (2)3 Sutton Coldfield (1)2
1-0 Arlick pen 38 mins
1-1 Ball 43 mins
2-1 Booth OG 45 mins
3-1 Arlick 72 mins
3-2 Marshall 87 mins

Hitchin: Bennett, Fontenelle, Pemberton, Williams, Lee (Gentle-King 88), Gilbert, Lewis, Velandia (Hammond 61), Arlick, L.Donnelly (Payne 80), Howell
Sutton Coldfield: Clarke, Quiggin, Male, Batchelor, Booth, Murrall, Dodd, Owen, Marshall, Ball (Matt 67), Jackson

Attendance: 244
Referee: L.Forrester

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