Late strike earns Halstead vital and valuable victory

Nick Miller hits the side netting.
Nick Miller hits the side netting.
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THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE FIRST DIVISION

Halstead Town 2

Woodbridge Town 1

Halstead came from behind to secure a win which keeps them joint top, but this game was marred by a serious injury to Woodbridge’s Josh Horton.

Halstead made a number of enforced changes through a combination of injuries, suspensions and non-availability and it included debuts for Elliot Ringe in the home goal and a returning Lee Hurkett, back from Haverhill Borough.

The two teams were evenly matched and for the opening half hour cancelled each other out.

There was little goal mouth action although Farthing almost got on the end of a Warren cross whilst Woodbridge had a couple of headed opportunities from a corner which came to nothing.

The half-hour mark saw the match swing in the visitors’ favour when a corner from the right was missed by keeper and Langfield swept it in to give Woodbridge the lead.

The home side’s woes continued as an injured Cook had to be replaced by Passley.

Halstead’s pressure was mounting and they finally got their reward from a corner, on 40 minutes, from Warren.

Murray flicked on at the near post, and Nick Miller firmly headed back across goal and into the net.

Murray was becoming more influential and this was typified two minutes before the break when he made a clearance in his own box under pressure and seconds later popped up in the visitors’ box and narrowly missed giving his team the lead.

The opening minutes of the half saw the home side’s intensity grow, prompted mainly by Murray and Passley.

But the game was still very even, with play switching from end to end and each team taking turns to control for short periods.

On 70 minutes Woodbridge’s Josh Horton bravely chased a through ball, but the home keeper got there first and the forward sustained a suspected broken leg in the collision. Play was held up for half-an-hour while he was treated.

The remaining 20 minutes saw the visitors pushing for the winner and during this period they had three or four clear chances to have taken the lead. They paid the price five minutes from time.

The recently introduced Abbott broke quickly and he fed in Jordan Hutchings who calmly fired the ball into the back of the net.

Halstead then saw out the remaining minutes for an important win.