Isthmian League

Strong Defending Denies Hawks Three Points

Whitehawk 1-1 Haywards Heath Town

Whitehawk played out a 1-1 draw on a very hot Bank Holiday Monday at The TerraPura Ground against 10-man Haywards Heath.

Playign downhill The Hawks that started the brightest. Lucas Rodrigues and Duane Ofori-Acheampong had already gone close before a Fintan Walsh volley on 15 minutes forced a great save from Heath keeper Luke Glover. A minute later Lucas Rodrigues was played in on goal but just as he was about to shoot he was pushed in the back by Heath full back Tom Summerfield, allowing Glover to scramble the ball away, with appeals for a penalty turned down.  Rodrigues was again played in by JP Kissock ten minutes later but pulled his shot wide of the advancing Glover.  The Blues responded with the ever-dangerous Trevor McCreadie forcing a good save from Hawks keeper James Broadbent, followed by a great clearance from Walsh. Seven minutes before half-time, Haywards Heath thought they had taken the lead very much against the run of play through McCreadie, but celebrations were killed instantly after a yellow card was given against him for punching the ball into the goal.

Just 5 minutes into the second half, the visitors were reduced to 10 men in strange circumstances as Josh Spinks, already on a yellow card, was shown a second after taking a free-kick from the wrong position inside his own half. 

The Hawks continued to dominate with the man advantage, but the Blues were defending well, throwing bodies in the way of any chances in the box. Rodrigues missed a great opportunity on 65 minutes, pulling a right foot shot wide when free inside the area.

Just a minute later and completely against the run of play, Heath were awarded a penalty when a long Glover goal kick was allowed to bounce into the box before Walsh was very harshly penalised for a trip on Lekan Osideko. McCreadie, who could have been considered lucky to still be on the pitch after he handled the ball for a second time during the second half, stepped up to score with this customary assuredness.

Hawks continued to pile on the pressure and on 79 minutes a Rodrigues header from point blank range was brilliantly blocked with his left boot by Glover.  Three minutes later the Hawks were deservedly level when first a Rodrigues shot was saved again by Glover, then an Alfie Rogers shot was blocked by Nathan Cooper, only for sub Connor Tighe to strike a beautiful right foot curler past the Heath keeper from 25 yards.

In injury time there was more drama, as firstly Tighe put a good chance wide only for Heath to respond with an Andrew Dalhouse’s header hitting the post. Right at the death Rodrigues was upended in the box but referee Harrison didn’t point to the spot. 

Hawks: Broadbent, Walsh (Banya 90′), Robinson, Emberson (Tighe 71′), Lopata, Hamilton (Rogers 79′), Rodrigues, Kissock, Ofori-Acheampong, Muggeridge (c), Martin
Subs Not Used: Deda, Unwin

Blues: Glover, Morrison, Summerfield, Cotton, Cooper, Spinks, McKenzie (c) (Hallard 90′), Warwick, McCreadie (Dalhouse 77′), Hartley, Osideko (Straker 83′)
Subs Not Used: None

Goals: Tighe 82′ (Whitehawk); McCreadie pen 66′ (Haywards Heath)

Yellow Cards: Hamilton, Walsh (Whitehawk); McCreadie, Spinks (2) (Haywards Heath)

Red Cards: Spinks (Second Bookable Offence – Haywards Heath)

Referee: Adrain Harrison

Attendance: 280

Man of the Match: Kacper Lopata

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