Match report Vs Boston Utd Venue: Aggborough Date: 22-02-22 Att: 2823 (away fans: 49)

22-02-22 - Report - Kidderminster Harriers 3 Boston Utd 1

Our team of ‘Prestons’ get a well deserved win

Report: Phil Lench

It was a team of Matt Prestons out on the Aggborough turf this evening when the Reds came out for the pre-match warm up. Out they came to warm applause from the fans already in the stadium and when they turned around on the back of their shirts was displayed Matts shirt number, 28, along with his name, Preston. A really nice tribute to our fallen hero and it was just our players either because Boston also had two players with ‘Preston’ on the back of their shirts but that was probably only a coincidence though.

Alex Penny wearing a tribute to Matt Preston shirt
Alex Penny wearing a tribute to Matt Preston shirt. As did all the team before the game

All we needed now was a performance that would match the kind of performance that he showed whilst with us. After a shaky start when their minds seemed to be elsewhere we got that.

We started the game looking to close the gap on third placed Brackley Town who’s game at Guiseley AFC had been called off earlier in the day. A win tonight would take us within a point of them and the same number of games played. We had two aims on the night then with closing that gap along with getting three points for the hospitalised Matt Preston.

His place was taken by Keith Lowe while the injured Geraldo Bajrami was covered by Lewis Montrose. 

The game got underway and for the first twenty minutes or so it was a little scrappy with plenty of hoofing from both sides and, so, mis placed passes. You could see that we were slightly nervous and needed to calm down a bit. It didn’t help our cause when the Boston defender, Matt Tootle, scythed Ashley Hemmings down on the touchline and visions of another broken ankle swept over the crowd. Tootle got carded for his robust tackle.

Omari Sterling-James sent a free kick way over the bar after getting similar treatment from Luke Shiels who also found his name getting written down for another agricultural challenge later on.

Luckily for us Hemmings calmed our nerves, and theirs, down soon after when Alex Penny bought the ball down and fed through for Hemmings to take it into the area and deftly fired the ball home into the corner of Marcus Dewhursts net. The keeper should really have done better.

 In the last minute of the half Penny came to our rescue when his on the line clearance was well blocked but then fell for Scott Duxberry who fired the ball over the bar and into the North Stand.

HT: 1 – 0

The second half was a whole lot better, from our point of view, with the nerves seemingly now settled. There was a bit less hoofing and a lot better crisp passing to our game.

Three minutes in came our first clear chance when a Penny cross found Hemmings who then sent a looping header narrowly over the bar. Lewis Montrose then tried to get in on the action but his shot from outside the area was possibly not strong enough to worry the keeper.

Sammy Austin was having a quiet game, by his standards, but he came alive fifteen minutes in when he set off for goal but got himself blocked by a defender. The ball ran loose to Amari Morgan-Smith and his toe poke through a crowd of defenders was easy pickings for Dewhurst.

Two minutes later and Sammy had got his goal. A ball split the defence and Sam was off, scurrying like a rabbit, after the ball. He took it towards the keeper then, with a smart side step, hung him on the line and rolled the ball home to make it 2-0.

Maybe we switched off a little with that goal because a few minutes later Boston had pulled a goal back. Substitute James Hanson sent in a shot that Luke Simpson parried away but only to the lurking Craig Elliott who returned the ball past him. Strangely it was a very subdued celebration from Boston, and their small number of fans, as they just calmly strolled back with the ball. To Harriers fans watching it seemed as if the goal had never happened.

Not to worry, superiority was soon restored when Caleb Richards fought for the ball on the touchline then broke free of his companion to send over a pin point cross into the area. The well placed Morgan-Smith needed no second invite to head the ball past Dewhurst and our third, and final, goal of the evening. 

Knowing it was job done we settled back and dealt with what little Boston had to offer. Ethan Freemantle came on for his first minutes since the away game at Hereford FC a month back when he picked up a hamstring injury. Jaiden White came on in the dying seconds of injury time and that, basically, was it.

On to Farsley Celtic on Saturday now after they didn’t do us any favours by allowing Gateshead to beat them 3-1. Not to worry, we’re getting closer to them.

FT: 3 – 1

Goals for Harriers: Hemmings 26, Austin 62, Morgan-Smith 75

Goal for Boston: Elliott 69

The Harriers Online MotM is: Caleb Richards

Talk about the game here

Latest table and stats here

Harriers Goals Subs Time Cards
Austin 89  
Sterling-James   92  
Freemantle   89  
White   92  
Boston Utd Goals Subs Time Cards
Tootle   87
Duxberry   65  
Abbott   83  
F Preston        
Ferguson   87  
J Preston   83  
Hanson   65  
Mr Jonathan Maskrey