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21 Nov 2006 SLC3R Rugby Town 2-1 Halesowen Town PDF Print E-mail

Errea Southern League Cup 3rd Round – Tuesday, 21st November 2006

Rugby Town 2 Halesowen Town 1 (AET)

Halesowen bowed out of the Errea Cup by conceding a soft winner in the final minute after a wonder strike from Ian Cooper had put the tie into extra-time.

The visitors had a decent first period with James Francis looking lively before being substituted by Nick Amos midway through the first half due to injury. Francis won an early free-kick and then his 3rd minute cross was cleared with Simon Forsdick lurking. Francis then flicked on for Sean Dowdall to feed Alex Cowley in the 7th minute but his final shot was wide. Stuart Pierpoint made an important 9th minute clearance and in the 12th minute Steve Hillman, making his first start in Halesowen colours, crossed for Dowdall.
After 20 minutes Rugby’s David Stone crossed for fellow striker Jason Taylor to hit wide. A minute later Grant Beckett put a free-kick over the Rugby cross-bar and after 33 minutes Forsdick picked up a loose ball but his final shot was also high. Pierpoint made another crucial interception in the 37th minute but on 41 minutes Niki Preston’s mistake let in Taylor to shoot over the Halesowen bar.
Yeltz goalkeeper Dan Woodhall saved at Taylor’s feet just after the interval but then Cowley was blocked in the 54th minute and another Cowley effort on 54 minutes ricocheted away. Amos earned a 66th minute corner but Hillman struck over the bar before Beckett went close in the 71st minute from a Cowley cross.
But Rugby took the lead in the 75th minute when Woodhall failed to gather a cross and substitute Andy COMMANDER struck home the loose ball. Halesowen were almost let back into the game in the 79th minute when Ross Harris volleyed Rob Warner’s cross over his own crossbar from 6 yards.
Rugby had further chances to increase the lead but Stone struck the post in the 81st minute and Taylor put Aaron Stringfellow’s cross over from close range in the 86th minute.
Halesowen temporarily saved the day with an injury time equaliser when a super COOPER shot from the edge of the area flew into the top right-hand corner of Farhad Afandiyev’s net for only his second ever goal for the club.
As the game went into extra-time, substitute Chris Brindley nodded down for Forsdick to hit over in the 93rd minute and Brindley then headed on for Amos after 101 minutes, but Amos was muscled off the ball. After 103 minutes Cowley’s attempt was blocked after being set up by Forsdick. In the second period of extra-time, home goalkeeper Afandiyev made a fine block when Forsdick was clear on goal in the 112th minute and Cowley won a corner in the 114th minute. Pierpoint headed a Lee Williams corner just over the bar a minute later.
Rugby’s last gasp 119th minute winner came when goalkeeper Woodhall allowed STONE’s shot to creep into the net at the near post.

Rugby Town: Afandiyev; Harris, Tullin, Herbert (Commander 65), Gordon, Hall, Gearing (Smith 95), W. Francis, Taylor, Stone, Stringfellow. Subs: Kolodynski, Sawko.

Halesowen Town: Woodhall; Warner, Hillman, Pierpoint, Preston, Cooper, Cowley, Dowdall (Williams 90), Francis (Amos 20), Beckett (Brindley 84), Forsdick. Subs: Lewis, Knight.

Referee: P. Kirkup (Northampton)

Attendance: 96
Booked: Pierpoint (50)

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