Hatfield Town miss chances to extend unbeaten run as Ampthill take the points
PUBLISHED: 21:44 12 February 2019
Hatfield Town couldn’t add to their first victory under Jason Beck on Saturday as they lost 2-0 at home to Ampthill Town.
The 4-2 success at the weekend in Spartan South Midlands Division One was long overdue and they started this game at Cotlandswick like a team high on confidence.
However, despite having more of the possession and chances it was two strikes from Jake Kissiedu that stole a victory for the Bedfordshire side.
Both halves saw the Blue Boys on top but bar a shot across the face of goal by Beck that was pushed out by Mitchell Howe, they struggled to get beyond the orange-shirted defence in the opening 45 minutes.
There was also a corner that needed hooked off the line after Jay Welsh had nodded it goalwards but when they did have the ball it was always in front of the back four and not too much of a threat.
And it was as the game got stretched that Ampthill struck.
A Hatfield attack was snuffed out and the ball pushed to the left wing for full back Tom Carter to gallop onto.
He delivered a wicked cross and when Hatfield couldn’t clear, Jake Kissiedu needed just two touched to curl the ball beyond James Weatherill.
Neither keeper was really tested for the remainder of the half although the referee was kept busy with three yellow cards, one to Beck himself.
He was still wound up as the teams came out for the second half but his mood would have been lifted by a far brighter opening which yielded a number of chances.
The first came inside the opening 30 seconds when some tricky footwork from Aaron Diviney ended up with him drilling a low ball across the face of goal that was too hot to handle and Toby Kirkham’s touch ran through to the keeper.
The second fell to Beck himself from a tight angle after the Blue Boys’ best passing move.
That was beaten out by Howe and when the ball was played back towards an empty net, Kirkham was eased off the ball and the loud appeals for a penalty were waved away.
Ampthill weren’t getting forward much at all although one spell of pressure around the hour mark did cause Hatfield some concern.
However, it was the fact that Hatfield were doing all the pressing that brought the second goal.
A quick break after a set-piece was cleared allowed Kissiedu to pick it up on the left-hand side and he hit a drilled low shot in off the far post.
Hatfield still pressed and Howe pulled off a great save to deny substitute Alfie McAra but it was Ampthill who had the best chances.
Kissiedu was denied by Weatherill when through one on one and the rebound was superbly cleared off the line by Welsh.
Ash Higgins then had an even better chance as Ampthill found themselves with a two-on-one break but Weatherill did enough to put him off and McAra completed the clearance.
The history books will be the ultimate judge of Hatfield’s season but there was enough in the performance to give hope to their long-suffering fans.
They just need to take their chances.
Tonight they didn’t.
Hatfield Town: Weatherill, Simmons, Welsh, Washbourne, Tye, Jessop (O’Brien 77), Shirley-Clarke, Kirkham (Simpson 66), Beck, Noot, Diviney (McAra 77).
Subs (not used): Hammersley, Reid.
Booked: Beck 42, Shirley-Clarke 78, Noot 83.
Ampthill Town: Howe, Phillips (Troughton-Smith 41), Carter, Smith, Mead, Mordecai, Burton, Dillon, Cerminara (Higgins 77), Clarke (Coote 71), Kissiedu.
Subs (not used): Blackman, Cooksley.
Goals: Kissiedu 28, 72
Booked: Dillon 24, Phillips 35.
HT: Hatfield Town 0 Ampthill Town 1