Sub salvo sinks Steeton
By STEPHEN HOWARD
Pickering and Kidd strike late to give Heys victory
Justin Pickering and Theodore Kidd came off the bench to finally secure a deserved victory for Heys over Steeton at Adie Moran Park.
Jon Lyons and Ryan Hutchinson’s side dominated this game for long periods on the back of some superb, fast flowing football but it was not until the last fifteen minutes that they were able to secure the points.
Missed chances, fine goalkeeping, the woodwork and some dogged defending by the visitors conspired to thwart Heys such, that as time ticked by, there was a feeling Steeton may return across the Pennines with at least a point. The Yorkshire side, despite being on the back foot for large swathes of the game also had their chances, making for a nervy second half.
Heys have had a stuttering start to the season but there were plenty of signs here that they are rediscovering the form that took them to the brink of promotion last season. Their ill luck with injuries however, shows no signs of abating. Lee Bruce withdrew after pulling up in the warm up and then Chris Baguley picked up a knock that him replaced by Max White as early as the 6th minute.
The hosts had already showed their attacking intentions by this point with Lee Grimshaw testing Alfie Stevens -Neale in the Steeton goal.
Heys should have gone ahead in the 9th minute when a super run and cross by Rio Wilson-Heyes found Michael Itela unmarked at the far post but the striker put his header wide.
The miss almost proved costly as the visitors almost took the lead with their first attack of the game as a nice passage of play by ended with Grogan going close with a shot that had Calum Jakovlevs scurrying across goal.
However, the general direction of play was towards the Steeton goal and in the 16th minute Heys took the lead. A deep centre from a Max White free kick was met by Lee Grimshaw who headed home at the far post. (below)
Two minutes later Wilson-Heyes waltzed through only to see his low shot come off the foot of the post.
As the pressure was maintained Grimshaw headed wide from an Itela cross before a super bout of one touch passing ended with White being denied by Stevens-Neale.
Grimshaw then saw a shot deflected wide as Heys did everything but score. Infact, it was Steeton who were to score the next goal of the game.
In the 35th minute Heys carelessly conceded possession and Andrew Briggs broke into the box before teeing up Angus Maney for a simple tap in.
Jamie Baguley fired a 20-yard shot just wide as Heys looked to respond but the visitors were gaining in confidence and Briggs and Maney both fired into the side netting as Heys became a little loose.
However, Stevens-Neale ensured parity at half time with two saves in quick succession, first keeping an Itela shot out and then as the ball bobbled around the area he dropped to push a Wilson-Heyes shot to safety.
Jamie Baguley looked to get Heys on the front foot on the restart with a shot direct from the kick-off which just cleared the bar as the pattern of the first half continued with Heys pressing but coming up against dogged defence by the visitors.
The woodwork denied the home side again on the hour when a near post cross by White was met by Grimshaw, but his flick came off the post.
Steeton almost capitalised on Heys increasing frustration by having two good chances themselves. A ball into box found Ben Clarkson unmarked but his close-range header was straight at Jakovlevs.
The Heys keeper was more severely tested in the 67th minute when as Heys struggled to clear a corner he pulled off a fine reflex save to keep out a Tobias Jeffrey shot.
Kidd replaced Itela as Heys looked to re-energise their attacks, but they continued to be denied. White and Danny Vincent linked well before the latter’s shot was saved by the legs of Stevens-Neale before Grimshaw headed wide from a corner.
However, in the 76th minute Heys found a way through as Pickering made an instant impact. The summer signing has missed all of the season so far after breaking his collar bone in pre-season but his first touch in a Heys shirt brought him a goal. Grimshaw seized on defensive hesitancy to seize possession and when he crossed Pickering timed his run to perfection to gleefully sweep the ball home.
Heys work was still not done as Steeton went looking for an equaliser to give the home crowd some anxious moments.
In the 87th minute though the points were finally secured. Kidd became Heys second super-sub as he showed great determination and skill to fashion an opening before drilling a shot into the far corner.
Heys are now unbeaten in five and will look to maintain their climb up the table when they host Daisy Hill on Saturday (3pm) before crossing the Pennines to face Shelley on Tuesday 2nd October (7.45pm).
TEAM: Calum Jakovlevs, Darius Photiou, Danny Vincent, Danny Warburton, Mark Ayres, Jake Wood (Capt), Rio Wilson-Heyes, Jamie Baguley, Mike Itela, Chris Baguley, Lee Grimshaw, Subs: Mark Baguley, Theodore Kidd (for Itela 63 mins), Max White (for Chris Baguley 6 mins), Justin Pickering (for Jamie Baguley 74 mins)