Hemel Hempstead Town 0 Wealdstone 3 (Philips 17, Lewis 43, Mendy 77)
After the heroics of Tuesday night the visit of another strong side, who will be in the promotion mix this season was probably the last thing Hemel manager Sammy Moore needed as he was without no less than seven players with injury and suspension and was only able to name 4 subs which included two academy lads and the visitors, Wealdstone took full advantage.
The game was strangely subdued for a local derby and here was actually nothing of note to report until Stones took the lead on 17 minutes after a dull opening period. The goal came after a free kick was lofted into the box from the right, Hemel keeper Sam Beasant opted to punch rather than catch the ball he found the same Stones player who had taken the free kick, he launched it straight back in to the back post where Michael Philips arrived unmarked to slide the ball home.
Hemel did have the ball in the net on two occasions after this but both were ruled out for offside and Jacob Mendy hit the bar for Stones before they added to their lead on the stroke of half time when Philips found himself in space on the right, he crossed to an unmarked Dennon Lewis to head home from close range.
The second half saw Wealdstone control the game for long periods without really threatening and the Tudors just couldn’t get going, constantly misplacing passes and running into a solid wall of defenders. The Stones barely had to get out of second gear and were seeing the game out comfortably and with few options for change Hemel never really looked like getting back into it.
Mendy added a third on 77 minutes, heading into an empty net after Beasant had parried Lafayette’s shot and it was game over.
Isaac Galliford almost reduced the arrears for Hemel late on with only their second shot on target but Aston Oxborough saved well with his legs.
Sammy Moore refused to blame the injuries and suspensions for the defeat saying that whilst it didn’t help and the players were clearly exhausted after Tuesday’s efforts, they didn’t do enough on the day both on and off the ball. They have to dust themselves down and get on with it, starting at Oxford next Saturday on another dreaded 3G pitch. He doesn’t expect too many of his injured players to be available as their injuries have to be managed carefully. An early return could end up resulting in a longer term problem.
Hemel : Sam Beasant 6 Jacques Kpohomouh 7 Craig Braham-Barrett 6 Munashie Sundire 6 Connor Essam © 8 Tyrone Sterling 8 Liam Nash 7 Jake Howells 7Jack Midson 6 (Issac Galliford 7) Mo Bettamer 6. Subs not used : Sydney Ibie, Alvin Magagda, Danny Boness.
Attendance 762 Star man : Tyrone Sterling : Match Rating 3/5