Too little, too late for Leverstock Green as quick-fire Hares run away with the spoils

editorial image

A battling second half display from Leverstock Green was not enough to pull back a 3-0 half-time deficit as they fell to a 3-1 defeat at Harefield United.

The Green side had only two days to recover from their previous game, and goalkeeper Dan McNicholas was making his debut in place of the injured Kieran Jimmy.

Despite this, Levy started brightly and a fifth minute a cross from Tommy Walsh found Louis Bircham unmarked in the box, but Bircham could shoot straight at keeper Luke Southwood.

However, it was Harefield who took the lead in the 33rd minute as Ryan Ashe’s free-kick was only cleared as far as Danny Bennell, who lashed home a volley from just outside the six-yard box.

Harefield extended their lead on 42 minutes when a free-kick deflected off the head of Ryan Egan and looped over the McNicholas’ outstretched arm into the net.

Then, in first half stoppage time, Michael Chennells went down inside the box under a challenge from Liam O’Keefe, and Harry Newman made no mistake from the spot to virtually kill off the game at 3-0.

Harefield rarely looked like adding to the lead in the second half, though, with Walsh heading off the line on 63 minutes to deny their only real chance.

Leverstock had much more of the ball and had a real go at pulling the game back.

Billy Smith came off the bench after 71 minutes and, within two minutes, Bircham set up Smith for a run into the box which was ended by a challenge from Egan.

The ref pointed to the spot again, and Bircham sent Southwood the wrong way to reduce the arrears to 3-1.

There was another chance on 81 minutes when Moses put Smith through on goal, but his shot was saved by Southwood.

Leverstock had a succession of free-kicks and corners, but lacked the killer touch inside the box.

In stoppage time they were denied again when a shot from Smith had Southwood going the wrong way, but the keeper still managed to keep the shot out with his boot to secure the victory.