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24 Mar 2007 SLP Halesowen Town 5-3 Wealdstone PDF Print E-mail

British Gas Business Southern League Premier Division – Saturday, 24th March 2007

Halesowen Town 5 Wealdstone 3

Jermaine Palmer marked an impressive Halesowen debut with a hat-trick to maintain Halesowen’s promotion push in a compelling eight goal contest.  But the Yeltz were made to fight all the way by the relegation-threatened Stones and made hard work of claiming all three points despite making a perfect start by taking a promising two-goal lead within the first nine minutes.

Gary Knight’s 3rd minute slip almost let in Dean Papali and at the other end Palmer headed on for Paul Devlin. New signing PALMER rose high to powerfully head home direct from Devlin’s resulting 5th minute corner to put Halesowen ahead. It looked to be an easy afternoon ahead when PALMER added his second goal on 9 minutes with his glancing header beating goalkeeper Paul Smith from another Devlin cross from the right.

However, hard-working Wealdstone refused to look beaten and their direct style began to pose all sorts of problems for Halesowen. The visitors were unlucky in the 24th minute when Theo Robinson was free to cross from the right of the area and Josias Carbon’s effort was cleared off the line before being scrambled clear. A 28th minute flick put ROBINSON clear down the centre to score through the legs of home goalkeeper James Dormand to put the Stones back in the game, despite Knight’s challenge. Stuart Pierpoint then made a good block from Robinson in front of goal in the 32nd minute.

After the interval Rob Warner’s 51st minute cross was lost by goalkeeper Smith but Simon Forsdick just failed to force home and the ball fell for Devlin to volley wide. Uncompromising Wealdstone deservedly levelled on 53 minutes with leading striker PAPALI striking home a rebound after Dormand make a fingertip save from Chris O’Leary from a right-wing corner.

But Halesowen were then relieved to restore their two-goal lead by converting twice within a four minute spell. Palmer turned with his back to goal on 61 minutes and his blocked effort was met by FORSDICK’s close range diving header despite the attention of two defenders. PALMER completed his hat-trick with a fine 64th minute strike when he picked up the ball in midfield and smashed a 28-yard drive into the net with the ball bouncing awkwardly in front of goalkeeper Smith.

With Wealdstone still refusing to lie down O’Leary glanced Graeme Montgomery’s 70th minute corner just wide and Papali struck an 83rd minute drive past the post. In a good 86th minute Halesowen move, Devlin fed Palmer and he squared the ball to Lee Williams but Smith raced out to save. The visitors reduce the arrears again after 87 minutes with a superb lob from John-Joe O’TOOLE beating Dormand from 25 yards out.

The Yeltz finally made the game safe just into injury time when substitute Alex COWLEY side-stepped goalkeeper Smith to lash the ball into the top of the net from eight yards after picking up a cross from the right following good work from fellow substitute Sean Dowdall. Five minutes into added time Smith made an excellent save to deny Dowdall after clever play down the right from Forsdick.

Halesowen Town: Dormand; Warner, Haywood (Hamilton 66), Williams, Knight, Pierpoint, Sheldon (Cowley 59), Amos, Devlin, Palmer (Dowdall 88), Forsdick. Unused Subs: Farrell, Brown.

Wealdstone: Smith; Carbon (Delisser 72), Moore, Chappell, Martin, O’Toole, Hall, O’Leary, Robinson, Papali, Montgomery (Maveso-Mputu 72). Unused Subs: Clark, Gill.

Referee: S. J. Cook (Belper)

Attendance: 424
Booked: Robinson (10), Papali (56)

HTFC Man of the Match: Jermaine Palmer

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