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Halesowen Town 4 Biggleswade Town 1
11:20pm Tuesday 18th September 2012 in Sport
BEN Haseley scored all four goals as Halesowen Town romped past Biggleswade in the FA Trophy.
The striker pounced on a defensive error to put the hosts in front and doubled the advantage before the break when he turned in Luke Corbett’s cross.
Another defensive howler gifted him the hat-trick before Brett Donnelly pulled one back for the visitors.
But Haseley drilled home a fourth late on to seal the win and set up a first qualifying round clash with Gresley.
The victory also netted the Yeltz £2,300 in prize money and will be some recompense for the cash lost by their early FA Cup exit.
Caretaker boss Colin Brookes and physio turned assistant Pete Denham may not be serious contenders for the vacant managerial post but at this rate they will give Shaun Cunnington’s eventual successor a hard act to follow.
This was the best performance by a Yeltz team at the Grove for a long, long time and the result of the season so far. It's a shame there were only 115 there to see it.
After an opening 30 minutes in which the visitors looked the more likely to score, Halesowen took over. Skipper Neil Barnfield ran the show in midfield, with Jean Gueyes terrorised the visiting full-backs and the supreme Haseley adding the finishing touches.
It was a bright performance from the off, if perhaps the final ball was lacking in the opening stages.
Biggleswade’s Jamie Arlick headed straight at home keeper Paul Evans for the first real attempt on goal, while at the other end Scott Lycett’s low drive was comfortably dealt with by Michael McEnterget.
But it was the visitors who came closest to opening the scoring, with Evans twice on hand to deny them. First he pushed away Craig Daniel’s dangerous looking cross with Brett Donnelly lurking and when the latter then did get a head to Jon Woolf’s cross, acrobatically tipped the effort behind.
Arlick sent a deflected effort straight at Evans while the Yeltz were full of nice passing moves with very little thrust in the final third.
Haseley had been largely quiet save for a wayward finish from a Gueyes through ball which went out for a throw.
But when he got another chance five minutes before the break, he didn’t hesitate. Stealing the ball 25 yards from goal, he raced into the box and held off the attentions of the desperate defender before sliding his finish past McEnterget and inside the near post.
More sloppy defending from Alex O’Brien then presented Craig Milligan with a chance to double the lead but he blazed over. Moments later Haseley showed him how it’s done, prodding home the second in first half stoppage time after his initial attempt a back hell finish from Corbett’s cross had been blocked by McEnterget.
Milligan was inches from connecting with an inviting Haseley cross at the start of the second period but the Yeltz did not have to wait long for the third. Again poor defending was to blame as Peter Gatti completely missed Natanial Caines’ long ball, allowing Haseley to run on and push the ball past the onrushing McEnterget and into the empty net.
The Yeltz were now in total command and Haseley nearly made it four with a flick header which just drifted wide, while Corbett saw a low drive parried to safety.
With 12 minutes to go, Biggleswade got a lifeline when Donnelly smashed home following a nice passing move on the edge of the Yeltz box.
But the hosts were soon back in command and Corbett was only denied by McEnterget’s superb reflexes, before Haseley really did scotch any hopes of a comeback, drilling home powerfully after a period of pinball in the visiting box.
YELTZ: Evans, Lycett, Caines, Brooks, Kelly, Milligan (Smith 77), Steane (Oatley 87), Barnfield (c), Corbett, Haseley (Evans 85), Gueyes subs not used: Drake, Flower.
Goals: Haseley 40, 45, 53, 82.
BIGGLESWADE: McEnterget, O’Brien, Clifford, Gatti, Gentle (c), Allinson, Daniel, Reynolds (Knott 59), Donnelly, Arlick, Woolf (Mason 59) subs not used: Green, Taylor.
Goal: Donnelly 78.