Points shared on blustery day at Evesham
By Derek Lloyd
Evesham Utd 4-4 Highworth Town
The visitors maintained their unbeaten away record in the Evo Stik Southern League Division One South with a hard earned point at Evesham United today.
With a strong wind blowing from end to end throughout, this was a game that might have been played mainly in one half of the pitch. This is not quite how it turned out however.
Highworth played with the wind in the first half and started strongly with man-of-the-match, Harvey Rivers, in the home goal, comfortably fielding an early shot from Chris Taylor before Toumani Sidibi had two shots blocked by desperate defending in the first 10 minutes.
Highworth keeper Connor Johns excelled on 13 minutes when blocking an effort from Cory Simpson before the visitors opened the scoring on 15 minutes when Callum McGhee-Parsons drove home from 20 yards beating Rivers low to his left.
Highworth increased their lead on 33 minutes when Sidibi forced an error on the left as Evesham tried to play the ball out of defence with Ashley Edenborough benefiting as he was set up and rounded Rivers before slotting home.
A pivotal moment in the game came in the 45th minute. Cory Simpson, who on another day with another referee, may have earlier received more than a yellow card for a lunge on Sean Wood, scored direct from a free kick from the right hand edge of the penalty box although Connor Johns may think he should have done better than just get a hand to the shot as it entered the net.
HT Evesham United 1-2 Highworth Town
Not unexpectedly the home side started the second half on the front foot with the wind at their backs although Rivers in the home goal produced a great save (apparently with his face) from Callum Parsons on 52 minutes.
The equaliser came on 61 minutes when Kye Simpson was allowed space on the right to fire home across Johns.
It appeared at this point that Highworth were in for a tough 29 minutes. This was not to be however and Callum Parsons rattled the home crossbar with a free-kick from 25 yards on 63 minutes before Matty Grabe won the ball out on the left, cut in but could only find the side netting. Rivers then saved one-on-ones from Parsons and Edenborough before Rory Sproule restored Highworth's lead on 73 minutes, heading home Sean Wood's cross at the back post.
Two minutes later the visitors' two-goal cushion was restored as Sidibi cut in from the right and beat Rivers with a rising shot.
Evesham got back to within a single goal on 76 minutes as Cory Simpson scored from 12 yards with a deflected shot .
Jacob Davidge struck a Highworth post on 85 minutes from an in-swinging, wind assisted, corner but it looked as if Highworth would hang on for a 4-3 victory until the 91st minute when Kye Simpson was allowed time and space to fire across Johns. 4-4.
There was still time for the home side to push forward and only a magnificent headed goal-line clearance from Ash Edenborough meant Highworth returned from Worcestershire with a point.
Having led by two goals twice, the Worthians may see this as two points lost rather than one gained.
FT Evesham United 4-4 Highworth Town