Hallett's double blow hits Hornchurch hopes
PUBLISHED: 17:05 04 March 2017 | UPDATED: 17:05 04 March 2017
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Hornchurch 1 Cheshunt 2
Hornchurch suffered only their second defeat in 25 Ryman North matches as Jason Hallett’s brace banked the points for Cheshunt at Bridge Avenue.
Honours had finished even when the sides met earlier in the season after a 2-2 draw, with Leon McKenzie netting twice for Urchins.
But the big striker could not add to his 33-goal tally against the Ambers, as Urchins saw a four-match winning streak brought to an end and slipped to fourth place after Thurrock’s 1-0 win at leaders Brightlingsea Regent.
The visitors got the first sight of goal on nine minutes when a corner fell to captain Dave Kendall, whose shot on the turn flew over the crossbar.
But Urchins did not heed the warning as the Ambers opened the scoring just a minute later when a cross from the left was headed past Sam Mott by the prolific Jason Hallett.
The home side were frustrated on 27 minutes when Leon McKenzie’s flick for Nathan Cooper was smothered by Cheshunt keeper James May, with Ambers then putting a shot wide and seeing Jack Lampe fire too high from 30 yards.
Ross Wall, looking to add to his 12 goals so far this season, was shown a yellow card seven minutes before the interval and was followed into the referee’s book by Cheshunt’s Jordan Spearman for a foul on As Thompson, before Teddy Nesbitt’s free-kick was comortably saved by May.
And Usman Adeniji’s cross was knocked back by Wall for McKenzie on the stroke of half time, but his effort was blocked by the visitors.
Wall headed wide from Jed Chouman’s cross seven minutes into the second half, before Thompson had his name taken and Cheshunt’s Lampe was also cautioned moments later.
And Urchins boss Jimmy McFarlane sent Tobi Joseph and Martin Tuohy on for Adeniji and Gary Cohen respectively as he tried to find a way back into the match.
Cheshunt doubled their lead with a quarter of an hour to go, however, in somewhat fortuitous circumstances when a defensive tackle sent the ball cannoning off Hallett and looping over Mott for the striker’s second goal of the afternoon.
But Hornchurch pulled a goal back two minutes from time when Nesbitt’s corner was flicked on by Joseph for fellow sub Tuohy to volley home his first goal since returning to the Bridge Avenue club.
It proved only a consolation, though, and Hornchurch will hope to bounce back when they visit struggling Ware next weekend.
The Hertfordshire club slumped to a 5-0 defeat at Bowers, conceding all five goals in the first half as former Urchins striker David Knight helped himself to a hat-trick.
Hornchurch: Mott, Cohen (Tuohy 72), Nesbitt, Bentley, Cooper (Da Cruz 81), Chouman, Thompson, Lee, McKenzie, Wall, Adeniji (Joseph 63).
Unused subs: Hussain, Coker.