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Match Report


Posted Tue 18 Oct 11 at 21:39 PM

FULL TIME: Harriers 5-4 Braintree

Report by Matt Wall - stats provided and generated for by the Press Association.

A simply staggering game at Aggborough Stadium on Tuesday night saw NINE goals shared between Harriers and Braintree Town, the home side edging back up the league table by virtue of a thrilling 5-4 win.

The visitors sprinted out of the traps in this one and easily had the better of the early stages and perhaps should have gone ahead as early as the eighth minute as Ben Wright was played in on the angle into the area, a low shot held well by goalkeeper Dean Lyness.

Just a couple of minutes later the Iron continued their attempts to make their early pressing count with a goal, Lyness again needed as skipper Kenny Davies wriggled free at the far-post to meet a cross with a header that needing tipping over the bar.

Harriers struggled to keep possession early on but did work themselves an opening opportunity of the night just after the quarter-hour mark, James Vincent teeing up Scott Phelan in the area who blazed over the bar after taking it first time.

An even better chance presented itself some four minutes later; a ball dropped into the area by Kyle Storer that Callum Gittings got up superbly well to meet, his downward header kept out by a super save from Nathan Macdonald.

Braintree remained impressive and midway through the first got their rewards as they opened the scoring - Wright's 20 yard, rising free-kick was kept out excellently by Lyness' parry but the visitors reacted the quickest to the lose ball with Sean Marks stabbing home at the near-post.

That certainly brought Harriers to life, however, and within a minute they were level as a delightfully-weighted ball was picked up by Nick Wright who took it, charged down on goal and powered a superb angled finish past McDonald and in off the post.

The home side eagerly pressed for a lead but in the visiting side you have one of the finest counter-attacking sides at the level; the ball was lost in midfield as the pacey Dominic Vose stormed up the field before supplying Marks who in turn slipped in strike partner Wright who powered sweetly past Lyness for 2-1.

You have to say, too, that just moments later the quick reactions of the Iron front line should have made it 3-1; Briscoe and Tom Marshall colliding in the heart of the home defence and Marks on the spot to pick up the bouncing ball with a fine volley that Lyness had to stretch to tip over the bar.

Harriers knew that they'd have to step it up a touch in the second half to stay in the game and some seven minutes after the break they did exactly that in the best possible way - this time it was their tern to bomb forward on the break and the danger looked on as substitute Steve Guinan was released out-wide; he drew defenders to him and lofted an excellent cross into the area and onto the head of James Vincent who got a powerful, looping header in from 12 yards that nestled in to the back of the net.

Delight we're sure for the midfielder who nabbed his second goal of the season - thrill that only increased two minutes later as he grabbed his third, capping a fine footballing move with a low drive off the upright as Wright and Gittings exchanged passes.

Guinan's introduction to the game was somewhat telling - clearly just as was the half-time roasting form boss Steve Burr. The experienced hit-man was heavily involved once more as his side made it three goals in a crazy four minute spell, heading down a deep cross into the area that fell for Gittings who took a touch before blasting into the top corner of the net for 4-2. Breathtaking. Especially as the goals just kept coming...

Two after the hour mark Harriers were rushed at the back and failed to really clear their lines as the ball bounced around area; the visitors certainly moved with more decision, though, as Aswad Thomas lashed his foot through it and crashed it past Lyness and into the back of the net with the aid of a deflection.

Worst still, though... Thomas was surging forward and looking to complete a quick-fire double - he shaped to shoot again on the edge of the area but was clipped by Sharpe, cue: penalty, and another goal for Wright as he finished impressively from the spot for 4-4, both sides now having surrendered a lead.

In some Blue Square Bet Premier games, though, eight goals just isn't enough! Mere minutes later, it was penalty time again but this time up at the other end as Wright (Nick, if you're losing track) burst into the area only to be fouled by McDonald. Spot kick, and up stepped Storer who saw his low effort from 12 yards comfortably saved. Enough drama? No way! Time for a re-take as the assistant referee closest to the action spotted, presumably, some encroachment. For the re-run there was a change of kicking duties as Wright claimed the ball, putting it down before slamming it past McDonald and into the far corner. That's 5-4.

The visitors threw on some late substitutions and there were some five minutes of injury time signalled as the madness threatened to continue; Wright breaking into the area once more as he looked to wrap up a hat-trick, a rising drive just heading over.

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