Albion defy the traffic and weather to go 2nd
Just the one league defeat in last 17 on the road
The arduous two and a half hour trudge through the M6 and M5 car parks, the swirling wind and driving rain, just two more hazards thrown at them aside of course from actually overcoming opponents on the field. This team unity just gets better and better. Saddened as well with the news of Pauline Chesters passing away earlier in the day then what a fitting tribute to her to produce the goods.
Witton once again produced superb away form in recording another win that moved them in to second spot in the league.
In atrocious wet and windy conditions and playing into the face of the elements, the football at times was truly awesome during the first period.
In the opening minutes Prince Haywood struck a free-kick wide of the left post whilst James Foley went even closer following a corner.
Albion got their deserved lead in the 16th minute, Foley’s initial effort was blocked, Matty Devine collected the loose ball, advanced through the middle and in turn saw his shot also blocked however there was Will Jones to calmly fire low into the net.
Halesowen immediately attempted to counter, winning a corner that Calvin Hare went down to claim. Play quickly switched to the other end and when Jones hit a fierce drive the ball was handled in the area by the Yeltz captain Asa Charlton. Steve Tames stepping up to send the resultant penalty kick the opposite way that keeper Daniel Platt went, to double their lead.
Looking for more goals, dazzling interchange between Jones, Tames and Rob Hopley deserved more than yet another defender's block from the eventual shot by Foley.
Platt, who received the sponsors man of the match award, produced a great save in the 35th minute to deny Tames after Ben Hedley had linked well with Devine to set the striker up.
Playing with the wind behind them in the second period Witton kept the pressure up with several marauding runs down the flanks by Devine and Haywood. However it was the Yeltz who were to score next.
Just before the hour mark a corner from the left saw the ball bobbling around the box before Jack Kelly eventually fired low into the goal to give Town some encouragement, on a night they were previously struggling to compete.
Hedley produced an audacious attempt from the wide right touchline that Platt palmed over his bar. From Foley’s flag kick Nick Ryan was desperately unlucky to see his attempt strike the underside of the bar. A Devine and Foley combination then saw Haywood, with tricky footwork, send the ball just over from an acute angle.
Twenty minutes from time Town had the ball in the net only for referee Scott Postin to award Albion a free kick having spotted Hare being impeded as the ball was bouncing at least three times towards goal.
Platt parried a Jones shot with Haywood not quite positioned to pick up the loose ball. With five minutes remaining Jones should have done better when beautifully set up by Haywood however the third and deserved goal wasn’t to be denied.
Another Foley corner, and I must mention his new red boots, yes the green ones thankfully have at last been consigned to the bin, Platt flapped at the cross and there was Prince Haywood to break the forward lines previous strangle hold on Albion’s season’s goals tally, by firing home.
YELTZ: Platt; Morrison, Kelly, Goddard (Shearer 60), Smith, Charlton, Hearsey (Steele 36), Finney, Spray (Clarke 61), Udoh & Chilton. Subs not used: Agbor & Hill. Booked: Udoh (simulation) & Smith (foul).
ALBION: Hare; Gardner, Devine, Hedley, Brown, Ryan, Haywood, Foley, Hopley, Tames (Williams 75) & Jones. Subs not used: Evans, Wilson & Neild. Booked: Hedley (foul).
Referee: Scott Postin Attendance 208