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Match Report


Posted Sat 24 Mar 12 at 16:53 PM


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

Ryan Rowe's first goal in club colours was among the highlights as Harriers recorded an important win against Darlington at Aggborough with a 3-1 win on Saturday.

There was almost real drama with less than four minutes on the clock as the game got underway in fine sunshine - Darlo's Clark Keltie was fortunate to escape with just a yellow card after a two-footed tackle on Tom Marshall.

The visitors' first openings of the day came either side of the quarter-hour and they both fell to Ryan Bowman who tried his luck from a reasonable distance with efforts that both fizzed some way wide of the target.

Just after, though, it was the men from the Northern Echo Arena who took the lead as Harriers were caught completely off-guard from a quickly-taken throw-in from Aaron Brown, Bowman the man on the spot to head the ball up and over goalkeeper Tony Breeden.

After 21 minutes a throw-in routine of their own almost saw the reds back level as Lee Vaughan bowled towards Anthony Malbon who nodded down to Jack Byrne on the edge of the area who drove at Jordan Pickford who eventually held well.

Two minutes later the side went closer as Mickey Demetriou's cross caused all sorts of problems, Dave Hankin then crossing for Malbon who headed wide from close range.

The pressure was mounting, though, and on 26 minutes the scores were levelled as a Vaughan corner was shot at by Marshall, the ball eventually falling to Hankin who, around 12 yards out, calmly placed the ball past Pickford and into the bottom corner of the net.

A crazy moment of play ten minutes later almost made it 2-1 Harriers; great wing-play from Marvin Johnson ending with a cut-in and shot that was parried away by Pickford, straight into the path of a defender who could only hit a clearance off the post. Moments later Johnson was again the man in the action as his header was held well.

An open-enough beginning to the second half saw chances at either end as Haydn Hollis headed wide for Darlington before Steve Guinan blazed over the bar after Hankin's volley had been well blocked.

With just nine played in the second period however the score was 2-1 as Harriers turned it around; fine play from Guinan setting up the in-form Malbon who held off his man before turning an angled effort past a beaten Pickford and into the corner of his goal.

Three after the hour Malbon held up the ball and played out to Johnson who kept off the attentions of a visiting defender before turning and sliding an effort just wide of the post.

On 74 minutes Harriers were almost caught cold after sloppily losing the ball in midfield as Darlington strode forward with a deep cross finding ex-Harrier Drewe Broughton who planted a free header wide from close range and certainly should have done better.

Late challenges from Byrne and sub James Vincent saw Harriers pick up a couple of yellows as the game drew to a close, the reds finally putting the game to bed as Rowe found the back of the net after being set up well by Vincent who pounced on a slip by Pickford.

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