After the cup defeat at Shoreham on Sunday changes were
made to the squad for this game with three players, Zac
Comber, Tom Killner-Brown and Anthony Jupp brought in
from the under 16s with Bradley Aljoe also returning to
the team at centre half.
The Hornets carved out a couple of early chances from
set pieces but the visitors were soon looking dangerous
with a number of attacks from their right wing. At the
other end Comber, playing as a lone striker, went close
with a shot that just clipped the outside of the
upright. Most of the problems for Horsham were
self-inflicted, with a couple of poor clearances and
some careless passing, and they were happy to go in at
the break with the score goalless.
H/T Horsham 0 Whitehawk 0
Pedro Silva replaced Killner-Brown at the start of the
half but it was The Hawks who came out with renewed
determination, playing some good passing football, and
at times the Hornets could not get the ball although the
work ethic was good with Connor Breivik, Jack Surlis and
Ryan Hallett always pressing in midfield.
With 70 minutes gone the visitors took the lead when
Hornets full back Jordan Baxter turned into trouble and
lost the ball on the byeline and a cutback led to an
easy goal for Hawks striker Fred Taylor. Whitehawk
pushed for a second to kill the game off but Horsham dug
in and kept them at bay with skipper Darian Clay driving
on his team-mates.
Surlis was replaced by Jupp as Horsham changed their
shape, pushing Dean O'Keefe into an advanced position to
support Comber, and with just seven minutes left the
debutant striker was put through by Breivik and calmly
lobbed goalkeeper Elliott Taylor from the edge of the
box to level the scores. The Hornets had no thoughts of
holding on for a point, though, and continued to push
forward and three minutes later Comber smashed the ball
into the corner of the net from 20 yards out. Whitehawk
players were stunned and Horsham came forward again with
O'Keefe unselfishly squaring the ball for his strike
partner to complete a memorable hat trick and secure
thee points for the team.
After back to back cup defeats it was a huge win for the
lads, with Horsham coach Alex Barron saying the big
difference simply was "This week the lads listened and
carried out the instructions given to them."