Colney Heath off to a flyer but mixed starts for London Colney and Harpenden Town

PUBLISHED: 12:14 07 August 2019 | UPDATED: 12:14 07 August 2019

Danny Fitzgerald hit Colney Heath's winner at Harefield United. Picture: KARYN HADDON

Danny Fitzgerald hit Colney Heath's winner at Harefield United. Picture: KARYN HADDON

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Colney Heath are living up to their tag as one of the Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division favourites with two fine wins to start the season.

Spencer Clarke-Mardel got the first goal in Colney Heath's win at Harefield United. Picture: KARYN HADDONSpencer Clarke-Mardel got the first goal in Colney Heath's win at Harefield United. Picture: KARYN HADDON

They began by travelling to last year's runners-up Tring Athletic on Saturday and returned with a 2-1 win.

That was followed by their first game at the Recreation Ground, with the visitors being Harefield United, the side who won the Division One crown last year without losing a game.

But that unbeaten run, stretching back to April 24, 2018, ended thanks to a second 2-1 win.

Spencer Clarke-Mardel had fired them into a half-time lead on 40 minutes, latching onto a Danny May free-kick, but they could have been out of sight by that point.

Jimmy Hartley goes close for Harpenden Town at Wembley in their Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division clash. Picture: RAY CANHAMJimmy Hartley goes close for Harpenden Town at Wembley in their Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division clash. Picture: RAY CANHAM

Dominic Knaggs and Jon Clements both sent shots wide while Chris Griffin headed a May set-piece kick onto the crossbar.

The second half saw more of the same with Knaggs, Danny Fitzgerald and Chris Blunden all going close but out of the blue Harefield grabbed an equaliser, Richard Pacquette scoring at the second attempt.

Heath redoubled their efforts after that although they were still wasteful in front of goal.

However, just as it appeared time would run out on them Fitzgerald fired the ball into the corner, reacting quickest after Mickey Shuttlewood's shot was blocked.

Saturday's win came courtesy of debut goals from Clements and Griffin, the second of which was a rocket from 25 yards.

Matthew Mitchell pulled one back from the spot but the superb form of Colney's Charlie May in goal ensured the victory.

The Magpies sit fourth in the fledgling table, the last of the teams to still have a 100 per cent record.

The side sitting top of the pile are Wembley who inflicted a 3-1 defeat on Harpenden Town on Tuesday night.

Both sides had gone in to the game on the back of victories, Harps coming in impressive style 4-2 away to Newport Pagnell Town.

Edward Canham, Harvey Scott, Connor Deadman and Jimmy Hartley were all on target there while Deadman put Town in front at Vale Farm.

Wembley equalised four minutes later though and two in four minutes midway through the second half gave the hosts the win.

London Colney meanwhile sat out Saturday's fixtures but got off and running on Tuesday.

It wasn't a happy beginning though as they too lost 3-1, this time at home to Oxhey Jets.

Tashriq Andrews got their only goal in the second half.

Despite just returning the SSML takes a brief break as the FA Cup starts on Saturday.

London Colney host Hadleigh United while Colney Heath go to Haverhill Rovers and Harpenden are at Stotfold.

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