Slight positional changes and Dan Pearson in for Reece Marshall were the alterations from the previous weeks win at home to West Allotment. We travelled to Heaton Stannington having lost all five previous league and cup games there. Despite the early autumn sun, there were some black clouds on the horizon.
We started strongly and had a good early chance through Vinny following a lob over the defence from Turnbull. Vinny’s cross shot was well saved by the keeper. Heaton bounced back immediately and had a great chance from a corner but the attackers ‘free’ header went just wide. A short corner routine a minute later also saw them come close. This hat-trick of chances ended following a Heaton break when the shot was tipped onto the bar by Kriss Carr.
The game swung both ways with chances at either end, we had another shot well saved from Gash and Heaton a further two chances that again saw Carr save well. It was Heaton who were having slightly the better of it and should have scored when one on one with the ‘keeper but the forward miscued his final shot and it went wide.
Brandon pounced on this just a few minutes later. We had a throw in on our right. Some good passing play from Burton and Pounder saw the latter send a deep cross into the far side of the box. There was Vinny running at the back of the last defender and he sneaked out a leg to volley the ball into the net. 1-0 Brandon.
However, as I was writing the details down in my note book, I just happened to look up and saw a screamer from fully forty yards away sail into the top corner of our net to level the scores almost instantly. The ball was still travelling upwards as it hit the net.
We had the chance to re-take the lead when we were awarded a penalty – I couldn’t see what for…. Unfortunately yet again we couldn’t convert from the spot kick and we let Heaton off the hook. In fairness, it was a good penalty, just a better save from the ‘keeper.
The last six or seven minutes of the first half saw chances at both ends but no team could convert.
The second half was ten minutes old when Heaton took the lead. A hopeful lob over the top of our defence saw Dan Pearson and Kriss Carr going for the same ball. As Dan went back Kriss came forward. The ball hit Dan on the head and it looped over Kriss’ head – straight into the path of the Heaton player who had an empty net to tap into.
Yet again the game swung both ways and chances galore for both sides. We headed just wide and had shots at the keeper, Heaton struck the woodwork twice and had one cleared off the line. We were the ones behind and we mounted loads of pressure. Chances came and went, chances came and were saved. Then in the 89th minute another cross into the box was controlled by Jackson, his pass laid off to Vinny who also controlled well and then shot low and hard past the goalie. 2-2.
Even as the game went into injury time there was still a good chance for either side to nick it. A deflected shot was well saved by Carr and then right at the death Adam Comby had a great chance one on one with the keeper but his shot was saved.
Absolutely marvellous value for money and a tremendous never say die attitude from the lads. Heaton a bogey team for us, especially away so I would have taken a point before the game.