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Reds Earn Vase Victory


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Saturday 9th November 2002

FA Vase Round 2


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Third placed Midland Alliance team Willenhall took on 3rd from bottom Arnold Town of the Northern Counties East League Premier Division. Considering Willenhall's previous 2 games had yielded 22 goals it was a surprise that this closely fought game was 0-0 at full time.


FA Cup killers Arnold just missed out on a first round proper tie with Cambridge and were looking to make progress in the Vase, on 7 minutes Boulter's volley brought an outstanding save by Reds keeper Vaughan.


A minute later and it Willenhall on the attack when a Hay cross was volleyed wide by Whitcombe. On 18 minutes a Grosvenor through ball to Bullimore was caught by keeper Broster.


With the play evenly balanced it wasn't until the 34th minute when the next serious attack was mounted. A Willenhall through ball beat the visitors offside trap and Moseley found himself with just keeper Broster to beat, however his tamely hit shot was comfortably collected by the keeper.


With half time approaching Back shot wide of the Willenhall goal. The second half saw a Moseley corner met by Pearce, his header cleared off the Arnold goal line on 59 minutes.


With Arnold's off side trap continually frustrating the Willenhall attacks the second half was far from free flowing, with Arnold seemingly content on settling for a replay.


On 88 minutes Hay found himself clean through, he squared the ball to Grosvenor who's shot was blocked by the out stretched Broster. Three minutes into injury time and Arnold nearly grabbed the game with their only chance of the half when Shepard blasted the ball goalwards at close range, only an outstanding save by Vaughan denied the visitors.


Extra time was a totally different proposition with both team stepping up a gear and going for the win. Just a minute into the added time and Arnold's Belcher was dismissed for a second vicious foul on Bullimore.


Grosvenor went narrowly wide on 95 minutes, then on 100 minutes Boulter's low drive was just wide.


It took a dazzling run by Hay and some nifty footwork by the young striker to unlock the Arnold defence before his cross was met by Bullimore and his effort hit the underside of the net to give the Reds the lead on 102 minutes.


On 105 minutes sub Quilt put a delicate ball through the defence to Hay, the Arnold keeper bravely diving at the strikers feet to deny the Reds a second.


The second period of extra time saw Arnold look tired while seeing a revitalised Willenhall, on 112 minutes Arnold should have equalised when sub Simpson found himself with an open goal following a mix up in the defence, his shot was well wide.


A minute later and super sub Bromley robbed an Arnold defender before slipping the ball to Hay who rounded the keeper before slotting home the second Willenhall goal.


On 117 minutes a pulsating run from the half way line by Bromley saw the sub set up Hay who coolly drove the ball home for the third.


A minute later and Whitcombe put the game beyond doubt when he slipped the ball into the net for the 4th.


Willenhall are back in league action next Saturday (16th Nov) when they welcome Boldmere to Noose Lane.


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