Team Bath 0 Halesowen Town 3.

Halesowen Town blew the Southern League title race wide open with a deserved victory at Twerton Park.

After Takumi Ake spurned an early chance for the hosts Yeltz went ahead thanks to a controversial Eldon Maquemba strike before Jay Denny doubled the lead on the stroke of half time.

In the second half Team Bath tried to find a way back into the game but rarely troubled keeper Mark Osborn and the points were sealed when Andy Hall struck his first goal for Halesowen six minutes from time.

The result saw Yeltz leapfrog their opponents to go top of the table and guarantee themselves a play-off place.

It was a victory which owed much to clinical finishing and determined defending, but the students will wonder just how different the game could have been had Ake taken advantage of a golden opportunity in the 13th minute.

Striker Sean Canham flicked a long ball into the path of the lively winger but despite having only Osborn to beat he hit a tame shot straight at the keeper.

Two minutes later the visitors were in front thanks to Maquemba's hotly-disputed strike. Team Bath players and staff were adamant a foul had been committed in midfield but the referee waved play on allowing Dean Brennan to break down the right and square the ball for an unmarked Maquemba six yards out.

The Portugeuse striker appeared to stumble as he tried to avoid a challenge by keeper Jake McGreath but did just enough to prod the ball over the line.

Team Bath manager Ged Roddy was furious with the officials and sent to the stands for his protests.

His side were struggling to create any clear chances and it was the visitors who came closest to doubling their lead with first Maquemba and then Brennan firing narrowly over.

When the second goal did arrive it was the home defence who were at fault as a cross from the impressive Ikechi Anya was only cleared as far as Hall. He found Brennan whose shot was blocked but the ball found its way to Denny ten yards out who lashed a shot past McGreath to send the travelling fans wild.

The second half saw the home side continue to dominate possession but struggle to break down a stubborn Yeltz defence with centre back pairing Stuart Pierpoint and Nick Amos in fine form. Alex Cowley and Darren Caskey were among several players who put their bodies on the line with heroic blocks.

Maquemba, who was booked for diving, nearly sealed the game in the 78th minute when he drove narrowly wide and was again in the thick of the action when the decisive goal did come six minutes later.

The striker forced right-back Matt Lock to lose possession near the corner flag and ghosted past another defender before squaring to Hall who side-footed home via the post.

Team Bath: McGreath, Lock, Lamb, Abbott, Warren, El-Abd, Ake (Llewellyn 81), Canham M, Smith, Canham S, Thomson (Perrott 53).

Yeltz: Osborn, Cowley, Pearce, Pierpoint, Amos, Denny, Hall, Caskey, Brennan, Maquemba (Maynard 86), Anya.