Hednesford Town faced Peterborough Sports at Keys Park in the Buildbase FA Trophy, the first meeting between the two sides since a memorable 3-3 draw on freezing night just before the country went into lockdown for the first time. With the Turbines topping the league table and the Pitmen in the top five and galvanized by a trio of new signings, expectations were high for an enthralling encounter.
Peterborough took the lead in the 14th minute when Jordan Nicholson scored at the far post after a long throw caused difficulties in the home defence. Carter Lycett came close to an equaliser after his freekick came back to him off the defensive wall, his second attempt drew a fine save from Lewis Moat. Josh McCammon was booked for a foul on Courtney Richards, before Mark Jones went through the Pitmen defence, producing a finish past Jono Brown to double the visitor’s lead. Another foul from McCammon did not receive the second yellow card it probably warranted, with Peterborough fortunate to go into the break two goals to the good with eleven men on the pitch.
The Pitmen came out for the second half with renewed vigour, Chay Tilt and Shaquille Master combining well to force a save from Moat. Sports failed to clear a corner and Wes Atkinson was tripped as he took the ball back into the area. Skipper Courtney Richards stepped up to score the penalty. Hednesford were awarded a second penalty when the referee spotted a pull on a Pitmen player during a corner, this time substitute Reece Flanagan found the bottom corner of the net from the spot . With the tie evenly poised, Peterborough regained the lead moments later with a sucker punch as Jones headed home from a freekick. Despite late chances for both sides an entertaining game ended with the visitors victorious and advancing into the next round.
After the game Keenen Meakin-Richards commented; “I have mixed emotions, the performance was tremendous, we dominated a game from start to finish. They are top (of the league) for a reason and I think at times we made them look very average. We made a few individual mistakes that cost us, but we have come this far and will continue to improve.”
Hednesford Town; J Brown, Atkinson, Lycett, Endall, Ison, Richards (Flanagan 65), Tilt, Parker, Brown (O’Sullivan 59), Soleman (Landell 59), Master. Subs; Rowley, Williams.
Peterborough Sports; Moat, Bazeley, Herd, Fryatt, Jones, Lawlor, Sembie Ferris, Kelly (Miles 68), Jones, McCammon, Nicholson (Eley 85). Subs Gash, McGowan, Santos, Elsom.