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Hitchin Town 5 Slough Town 2

Sunday, March 29 2015

Hitchin triumphed in a feisty encounter at Top Field, in a game that saw eight yellow cards, one dismissal, seven goals and a fair share of rain and sun.

The visitors had the first chance of the game through Jake Parsons in the third minute, although Charlie Horlock had his near post well covered to block the effort.

Parson's corner was then well retrieved by Horlock in the fifth minute. 

A minute later Guy Hollis produced an excellently timed tackle to deny Brett Donnelly the chance to advance towards goal.

In the 10th minute Reece Yorke's powerful header soared over the crossbar from a Slough corner.

After the confident start from Slough, the visitors switched off in the 12th minute to gift Hitchin with the opener. Slack defending left Lucas Kirkpatrick unmarked at a corner and the midfielder timed his run perfectly to head home with ease.

Just five minutes later Brett Donnelly and Reece Yorke were involved in a collision, with Donnelly staying down in obvious discomfort. After consultation with the linesman, the referee issued Yorke a straight red, as well as a yellow to Lewis Rolfe and Scott Harris for their part in the commotion that ensued.

It took the Canaries just two minutes to capitalise on the man advantage and it was Ian Rees who produced an excellent strike to put the hosts 2-0 up.

Hitchin were then predictably in control, although the visitors were still lively. Peacock produced a dangerous cross in the 25th minute but Brett Donnelly was just short of connecting with the ball - it should have been the hosts' third goal.

In the 39th minute Peacock did well to hold the ball up down the right before playing the ball to the top of the area to an unmarked Rees. It was an excellent opportunity to put the Canaries further ahead but the midfielder blasted his shot over the crossbar.

Harris got a shot away in the 40th minute but it made for a comfortable save for Horlock. 

Kane Smith, who had an excellent game, won a corner in the 42nd minute and it was Kirkpatrick who found himself with the ball, producing an excellent strike which looked to be his second goal of the game. Peacock, however, got the last touch on the midfielder's on-target shot and claimed the goal in what was now 3-0 to the home side. 

Slough had a great opportunity to reduce the deficit just before the half time whistle, courtesy of strong play from Ed Smith. The Rebels' forward steamrolled through the defence before producing a powerful strike that forced Horlock in to making a save.

Half Time: Hitchin Town 3-0 Slough Town

Slough come out fighting in the opening stages of the second half and Horlock pulled off a fine save early on to deny Ryan Parsons.

Kane Smith again produced some great play in the 52nd minute. After cutting out a pass to Ed Smith, the defender ventured forward and struck the ball from long range which caught Luke Williams off-guard, forcing a reaction save which went over the bar for a corner. The resulting corner saw Peacock's acrobatic effort go high from close range.

Just five minutes later Peacock made it four for the hosts. It was Kirkpatrick who had the initial shot but Williams could only parry the ball to Peacock's feet - the striker relishing the gift as he tapped the ball in the back of the net.

Hitchin continued to look comfortable and the hosts produced some confident passing.
Slough, however, continued to fight on and they caught the Canary defence out late on. It was Ed Smith who headed the ball in to the back of the net in the 84th minute.

The late goal looked to be both a consolation for the visitors and the last of the game but Dan Webb headed home from close range just five minutes later for 5-1, before Ed Smith got his second in injury time after some great work from Ryan Parsons. 

Final score 5-2 to Hitchin, in what was an eventful game at Top Field.

Teams:
Hitchin: Horlock, Rolfe, Smith, Ann, Webb, Kirkpatrick, McNamara (Barker 45'), C. Donnelly, B. Donnelly (Martin 64'), Peacock, Rees
Subs (not used): Walster, Pearson, Corran

Slough: Williams, Fraser (Moran 82'), Parsons, Hollis, Yorke, Short, Parsons, McClurg, Harris (Edwards 45'), Smith, Read (Jeffery 17')
Subs (not used): Henry

Goals: Kirkpatrick 12', Rees 19', Peacock 42', 57', Webb 89' (Hitchin)
Smith 84', 90+3' (Slough)

Yellow cards: Rolfe, Peacock, Rees (Hitchin)
Hollis, McClurg, Harris, Jeffrey, Edwards (Slough)
Red cards: Yorke (Slough)

Attendance: 480

Hitchin Man of the Match: Lucas Kirkpatrick

Sascha



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