Hertswood Vale put their league worries to one side as they beat Finchley City to claim their first victory of the season.
Peter Morrison Trophy First Round:
Finchley City 1 Hertswood Vale 2
Sunday, 23 October, 2016
Vale came into the game following a string of poor results, however the return of a number of key players boosted spirits ahead of kick-off.
It was Finchley who took the lead from a header which came from a long throw into the box. The rest of the first half was a solid, defensive affair, with few chances created by either side.
A 15-minute break and inspirational team talk later, Vale came out the blocks with greater focus, vision and energy, and were soon creating chance after chance. In the 59th minute, Harry Graham was rugby-tackled to the ground by the Finchley City goalkeeper and despite fluffing his lines with the initial penalty, displayed great composure to slot home at the second attempt after a retake had been rightly awarded with the goalkeeper off his line.
A series of chances for both teams, but an inspired performance from Hertswood Vale’s Number 1, Yaacov Goldin, kept the score at 1-1 as the whistle for full-time went.
Despite two players unable to continue beyond the 90 minutes, and with the council attempting to take down the goals, Vale had it all against them going into extra-time.
However – and don’t adjust your screens. A long throw from Ben ‘Rory Delap’ Mandel, found co-manager Jack Shulman just inside the area. A powerful nodded effort towards the top corner was mishandled by the goalkeeper, as the ball fell over the line in the first half of extra-time. Shulman’s first goal for the Vale was awarded to him despite Sam Cohen’s best efforts to poke it over the line. The “fans” went wild.
An onslaught by Finchley City in the second half of extra-time was resiliently well-marshalled and snuffed out by Theo Gluckstein and co. as Vale held onto their first win of the season.