Colney Heath out of FA Vase after penalty shoot-out heartache at Hadley

Harry Shepherd in action for Colney Heath FC

Harry Shepherd was the scorer of Colney Heath's only successful penalty in the shoot-out defeat to Hadley in the FA Vase. - Credit: DANNY LOO

Colney Heath's hopes of reaching Wembley in the FA Vase came to a heart-breaking end as they lost on penalties to Hadley.

The round three match at Brickfield Lane in Arkley had finished 0-0 after 90 minutes but was where it all went wrong for the Magpies.

Only Harry Shepherd was successful from 12 yards for the Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division outfit and with the hosts converting all four of their spot-kicks, the Essex Senior League side went through with a 4-1 win.

Hadley nearly got off to the perfect start when Solomon Ofori got on the end of a Shaz Anwar cross, goalkeeper Alex Clarke making the big block.

The Magpies first effort came from Marcus Mealing with his 20-yard shot taking a deflection and bouncing just over Luke Ward's crossbar.

Hadley's tactics were to hit long balls forward but they were easily dealt with by Colney defenders Yasin Boodhoo, Jay Lovell and Martin Standen.

Both sides had further chances before half-time but neither could take them.

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Ed Davies hit one wide for Hadley while Dominic Knaggs and George Devine had efforts blocked in quick succession as Colney Heath kept pressing.

They were hit by an injury to Spencer Clarke-Mardel though and he was replaced by Danny Fitzgerald.

The second period was more of the same. Clarke make a fine save when he pushed a free-kick from Sam Edwards around the post and he also denied Ofori, Hadley's mean threat.

At the other end a free-kick from Jack Woods was fired right across the face of the goal and a charging Devine saw his firm header saved down low by Ward.

It meant a third shoot-out for Heath in this year's competition following earlier successes against Wivenhoe Town and Holland.

However, both Lovell and Woods missed their efforts, the latter striking the crossbar, and when Billy Baird scored the third for Hadley, the writing was on the wall.

Shepherd gave them brief hope but Clarke couldn't stop Davis from converting the fourth kick and sending Hadley into round four where they will travel to Sutton Common Rovers.