Halesowen 1, Stourbridge 2

FORWARD Karl Hawley struck late to hand Stourbridge a derby day victory over Halesowen Town in the FA Trophy.

The Glassboys progressed at the expense of their rivals following a typically close encounter at The Grove.

It was an even battle during the opening exchanges as both sides looked for a foothold in the clash.

It was perhaps Stour that settled the quicker when they finally got their wide men into the contest.

It was the duo of Chris Lait and Matt Dodd that created the first real opening in the 22nd minute.

Lait beat Luke Connolly down the left before standing the ball up to the far post.

Dodd rose to meet it but could only rattle the bar from close range with the goal at his mercy.

But the visitors took the lead ten minutes later through skipper Stuart Pierpoint.

He stayed up field after initially coming forward to try and meet a host of long throws from Tom Tonks.

The Yeltz defended them well but the Glassboys kept the pressure on and worked a good opening down the right through Dodd and Tonks.

The latter got in behind and cut the ball back across the box to Pierpoint who hit a first time angled drive into the top corner to give keeper Dan Platt no chance.

However, it took Hales just six minutes to hit back.

They broke up field with pace and purpose through Keyon Reffell. He got in down the left before crossing to strike partner Aaron Daniels to convert.

It was a good break and showed in one move the threat posed but the Yeltz forward line when given the right sort of service.

Those goals were the main highlight of a half that proved evenly matched throughout.

The second half continued much the same as the first with chances few and far between.

Neither keeper was forced into a save as the rivals battled for possession for long periods.

Hales had their best spell early in the half as they applied the pressure, but still both keepers were hardly called into action.

The half had no incident of note until the 73rd minute when Raffell was denied a penalty by referee Phil Hardisty.

The striker got in behind the Stour back line before going down under pressure from Pierpoint and Dan Scarr.

The Shed End shouted for a spot kick but the officials remained unmoved.

The winner soon after came in the 78th minute when Hawley headed in a sublime Justin Richards free kick after Dodd was brought down on the left.

It was enough to hand the visitors the bragging rights in a game that became a scrappy affair for long spells.

Halesowen: Platt, Connolly (Rosser 86), Griffiths (Cooper 82), Westwood (Gueyes 80), Morrison, Lewis, Charlton, Bragoli (c), Reffell, Daniels, Hales.

Unused Subs: Sargeant.

Stourbridge: Solly, Green, Scarr, Tonks, Smikle, Pierpoint (c), Dodd, Broadhurst, Hawley, Richards (Knight 90), Lait.

Unused Subs: Canavan, Wright, Penny, Price.

Att: 808.

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