FC Halifax Town’s search for their first away win of the season goes on after they were beaten 2-0 at Kidderminster.
Kidderminster away on a Tuesday night didn’t look particularly appealing when the fixtures were released, and so it proved as goals from Michael Gash and Joe Lolley ensured the Shaymen’s winless run on the road continues.
The Harriers’ Monaco-esque strip was the only resemblance to the French Riviera on a cold, wintry night in the Midlands as a strong looking Kidderminster side proved too good for Town.
Most of the 126 travelling Town fans were probably at Aggborough 15 years ago for their promotion party, but they, like the Halifax players, will have been pining for the comforts of home by full-time.
Adam Smith returned to the starting line-up in place of Paul Marshall after his one-game ban, while Ryan Toulson and Scott McManus both made their 100th appearances for the club.
The Harriers didn’t exactly race out of the blocks, but Town did a good job of silencing the home crowd as they restricted the hosts to the odd half-chance and long-range shot early on.
But hesitant defending by McManus and an out-of-sorts Danny Lowe near the left touchline was punished when the ball broke to Gash, who struck the ball low across Matt Glennon and in off the post.
Town responded soon afterwards through Matt Pearson, who took advantage of similar dallying in the Kidderminster defence to latch on to a loose ball before his low shot was saved by Nathan Vaughan, with Dan Gardner sending the rebound way over the bar.
Chances had to be earned between two hard-working sides though, with both teams often limited to shots from outside the box, an especially fine example being the impressive Anthony Malbon’s excellent effort from near the right by-line that sailed inches wide of the far post with Glennon beaten.
Pearson then got sight of goal again following Town’s best move of the game so far a few minutes before the break as Gardner and Gregory linked-up just outside the box before Pearson’s driven shot was superbly tipped behind by Vaughan at his near post.
The first-half featured as many wayward passes as incisive attacks from both teams, a trend that continued into the second 45 as Lee Gregory and his counterpart Gash, his goal aside, rarely got sight of goal against two well-constructed defences.
Kidderminster were good value for their lead though, and there could be few arguments when they doubled their lead after looking the greater threat since the restart.
Town could do little to prevent Lolley from doubling his side’s lead when he cut in from the right and sent the ball flying past Glennon from the corner of the box and into the top left corner of the net.
It suddenly looked a long way back for Town even with half-an-hour still to play.
Kidderminster’s second goal only served to strengthen their resolve and shake Town’s belief of a comeback as a tired looking visiting side battled in vain for a route back into the contest.
Kidderminster: N Vaughan, L Vaughan, Gowling, Grimes, Demetriou, Fowler, Jackman, Gittings (Byrne 62), Lolley (Johnson 87), Malbon, Gash (Morgan-Smith 75). Subs not used: Lewis, Dance.
Scorers: Gash (21), Lolley (57)
Shots on target: 6
Shots off target: 6
Halifax: Glennon, Toulson, Ainge, Roberts, Lowe (McReady 83), Smith, Maynard (Marshall 61), Pearson, McManus, Gardner (Wilson 90), Gregory. Subs not used: Senior, Carver.
Shots on target: 3
Shots off target: 4
Town man of the match: Matt Pearson