Rovers denied by 'keeper
Herts Senior County League Division One Croxley Guild 4 Harpenden Rovers 1 HARPENDEN Rovers bid to extend their unbeaten run that started way back in December was undone by some fantastic goalkeeping from Croxley Guild custodian Michael Lavender. With
Herts Senior County League Division One Croxley Guild 4 Harpenden Rovers 1
HARPENDEN Rovers bid to extend their unbeaten run that started way back in December was undone by some fantastic goalkeeping from Croxley Guild custodian Michael Lavender.
With injuries and illness ravaging Rovers they were forced into fielding a makeshift frontline with centre back Steve Fox and debutant Daniel Norris called in to make a new front line partnership.
The game started poorly when after just three minutes rovers went behind when a defensive error was capitalised by the Croxley Guild Striker. Rovers were put under some immense pressure for the first 25 minutes but after weathering the onslaught, the midfield duo of Matt Chugg and Adams dominated play.
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Rovers had chances to equalise but Norris was first denied by Lavender, and then Norris and Smith both narrowly missed the target.
Rovers made it much harder for themselves when, from a Croxley Guild free kick, no one took charge and the ball was deflected off Foster for an own goal, to give Croxley a 2-0 lead at half time.
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Rovers were completely dominant in the second half with Rovers outstanding player Neil Cannon causing havoc down the right wing.
After 10 minutes Rovers thought they had a lifeline when Chris Ellis was fouled in the box, but Adams' penalty was excellently saved by Lavender.
This was the start of some remarkable performance from the Croxley stopper during the next 15 minutes pulling off six remarkable saves to deny several from Golds, Cannon and then Humphries.
Eventually Rovers scored and it was a goal to remember from skipper Chugg who fired home a 25-yard thunder bolt.
Rovers piled on more pressure but kept finding the Croxley 'keeper in outstanding form. Chasing the game, Rovers threw five men forward, but Croxley broke away twice in the last minute to run out undeservedly 4-1 winners.
Rovers travel to second from bottom AFC Hatfield Town on Saturday and will be confident of picking up all three points against a team that has only won twice all season.
Harpenden Rovers: Goodwin, Ellis (Carberry 76), Cannon, Foster, Smith, Chugg, Adams, Golds, Fox (Coogan 68), Norris (Humphries 45).