HEMEL PROGRESS IN FA TROPHY
By Tony Conway
Match report from Allan Mitchell.
A game of two halves as the two Premier League heavyweights met at Vauxhall Road.
It was the home side who made all the early running with Ben Mackey and Lewis Toomey forcing great saves out of the visitor’s custodian Inigo Echepare, both efforts pushed away for corners.
Hornchurch also had an early chance and Elliott Styles goal bound header was cleared off the line but the resulting breakaway attack saw Dave King drive forward and cross for Dave Hutton who scored with a rare headed goal to make it 1–0.
Somewhat against the run of play Hornchurch equalised when Hemel failed to clear the ball and Frankie Curley stabbed home from close range.
Before The Urchins had a chance to settle Lewis Toomey restored the home sides lead after a great interchange between Hutton and Dave Pearce, with the latter squaring the ball for Toomey to make it 2–1.
Ben Mackey then missed a great opportunity when he arrived unmarked at the far post but he headed wide. Hemel won a throw on 40 minutes and Toomey brilliantly worked his way into the Hornchurch box and threaded the ball through to Ben Mackey who, this time made no mistake.
The second half was in stark contrast to the first with neither side really creating too much and the game appeared to be petering out when Stefan Payne inexplicably got himself sent off for a deliberate handball, after being booked in the first half.
This seemed to affect the home side more and it was the visitors who grabbed a life line in the 80th minute when Rickie Hayles scored from close range.
Jordan Parkes came close for Hemel late on but it was Laurie Walker who saved the day for The Tudors in the final minute with a great save to deny Hornchurch an unlikely equaliser.
Hemel Manager Dean Brennan felt his side were sloppy in the second period having dominated the game in the first but great players come good in big games and he felt that’s what Walker did with the last minute save.
Hemel Hempstead Town: 1: Laurie Walker 2 : Dave King (c) ( 15 : Danny May) 3 : Kyle Connolly 4 : Olly Thorne 5: Kieran Murphy 6 : Moussa Diarra 7 Danny Talbot ( 12 :Jordan Parkes) 8 : David Hutton 9 : Dave Pearce 10 : Ben Mackey 11 : Lewis Toomey ( 14 : Charlie Mpi) Subs not used 16 : Oliver Hawkins 17 : Ryan Parsons.
AFC Hornchurch: 1 : Inigo Echepare 2 : Phil Starkey ( 14 : George Purcell) 3 : Alex Bentley 4 : Rickie hayles 5 : Elliott Styles (c) 6 : Frankie Curley 7 : Tambeson Eyong (16 : Sam Lechmere) 8 : Joey May 9 : Stefan Payne 10 : Leigh Bremmer 11 : Michael Spencer (15 Chris Bourne) Subs not used 12 : Carl Rook 17 : Billy Coyne.
Goals: Hemel Hempstead Town (Hutton 11, Toomey 16, Mackey 40), Hornchurch (Curley 14, Hayles 80)
Man of the match: David Hutton (Hemel)