Harriers got back to winning ways on Saturday as they cruised to a 2-0 win over Barrow at Aggborough with a performance of sheer professionalism rather than sparkle.
Steve Burr and Gary Whild handed a first start since November to top scorer Ryan Rowe for this one and within three minutes he’d repaid them with the opening goal.
The former Stourbridge man picked up the ball around 20 yards from goal and as he prowled around you sensed everyone inside the ground knew what was coming –goalkeeper Danny Hurst powerless to stop it as he curled the ball into the top corner to record his tenth of the campaign.
He almost had his eleventh on seven minutes, too, but another bending striker after cutting inside this time went just over the bar – Rowe two minutes later setting up Jamille Matt who forced Hurst into more early business with a good double save.
Barrow had their first sight of goal on 14 minutes as a Sean Hessey free-kick was met by a good header from Tom Anderson as he rose highest, Danny Lewis having to be alert between the sticks as he palmed the effort over.
James Owen lashed volley over the target for the visitors soon after the half-hour mark but chances after the goal were really few and far between – James Vincent’s next to come as he saw a close-range effort parried away by Hurst.
The second period was much slower to start than the first and it took some eleven minutes after the re-start before the visitors’ Anderson blazed one high over the bar – soon after, there was a return from injury for winger Marvin Johnson off the bench.
It took another quarter hour or so more for the next real action and again it was Barrow who almost equalised with 70 on the clock, Sean McConville sweeping a shot towards goal that was kept out by a combination of Lewis and Josh Gowling on the line.
Keith Briggs smashed one wide of the upright inside the final ten minutes, but the goal that was needed to truly put the game to bed finally came on 82 minutes as he powered an excellent header past Hurst into the top corner, latching onto a ball of real quality for Callum Gittings.