ZION CITY 4 HAWBUSH 3
This game was absolutely astonishing and only football can create these kind of insane emotions, as we went into the last 10 minutes 3-0 up only to lose 4-3 with the last kick of the game.
To put some context into the game, in the previous three encounters against Zion, we had conceded 9, 8 and 7 goals and went into this game with only 13 players and 9 of our squad out, so we expected a very hard match.
But the signs had started really brightly for us and we found ourselves on top throughout the first half. We had created a chance in the first minute before Dan Scriven burst down the left and cut the ball back for Lee Perks to smash home from close range.
Lee then nearly made it two, when the ball was squared from the right but bobbled over his foot from just a few yards out. If anyone remembers Gazza v Germany in Euro ’96, we all jumped to celebrate but the ball kept rolling!!
Zion have great pace and skill but we were containing them well, and managed to extend the lead when Mitch Pountney swung in a great corner and Simon Ashby rose highest to head home and make it 2-0 at the break.
For Hawbush the full-back pairing of Josh Westwood and Mark Dalloway along with Centre Half Stephen Cookwere having great games, and Lee and Arron Hope were working really hard up front, with Jacques and Dan holding their own in midfield.
After the break Zion upped their game and started to put us under pressure with stand-in keeper Ben Walton making numerous good stops and it was Hawbush who went 3-0 up when Lee hooked the ball into the path of Jon Paul Shaw who finished brilliantly when through on goal.
But then with 78 minutes on the clock the game completely turned when a Hawbush clearance from a corner hit a Zion player and went in the top corner.
Suddenly Zion were all out attack and they made it 3-2 with about 7 minutes left after a neat finish from inside the box. Then heading towards injury-time Zion midfielder Ben Wilkes made it 3-3 with one of the best goals I have seen in my 14 years in WMCFL, and I have seen some goals! A long throw in was met with a perfectly met flying overhead kick which flew into the top corner and Hawbush were shell shocked.
We thought we could hold on but then with the very last kick of the game Zion won a corner and the winner was headed home from close range as we failed to get ourselves organised.
I think this game just came down to our inexperience as most of our lads are 17-18 year olds still getting to grips with how to close a game out and how to keep your head up when you concede a goal.
The lads are absolutely gutted by the result today but the signs of improvement are definitely there and we will get ourselves up ready for next week.
ZION CITY 4 HAWBUSH 3