George Legg does down to save Jake Robinson's penalty for Hemel Hempstead at Bulpit Lane on Monday
Hungerford Town 3 Hemel Hempstead Town 0
THREE superb finishes ended Hungerford’s two game losing run and kept them bubbling just under the early season play-off places in the Vanarama National League South.
And there was more than goals to savour as goalkeeper George Legg put aside a costly error on Saturday to ride to the challenge and prove impassable, even saving a late penalty that might have hauled Hemel back into contention.
The result was important, but manager Bobby Wilkinson was more pleased with other aspsects. “The result for me was quite irrelevent,” he said. “I was more happy with the way my team played, their work rate and desire, and there was only one team who wanted it more than the other.
“If you look at them and us, they gave 50 per cent and we gave 100 per cent, and every time we’ve played like that we’ve won.
“And George Legg just proved what a brilliant ’keeper he is.”
Hungerford surged out of the blocks and went ahead after 16 minutes when Garyn Preen picked up a loose ball and let fly from 30 yards with a vicious shot that left former Hungerford loanee goalkeeper Jon Henly well beaten.
Henly saved well from Nat Jarvis while a Jordan Rose header off the mark was Hemel’s best first half effort.
Legg was called into action at the start the second period to save from Jack Kelly as Hungerford searched for the second goal to ease any nerves.
That finally came after 83 minutes when Henly had to go down to punch out a Preen delivery, but the ball fell to substitute James Clark on the edge of the area to drive home the rebound.
With four minutes to go, Hemel snatched a possible lifeline when Ian Herring was penalised for a push on Jake Robinson, who got uip to take the penalty but saw Legg go down to his left to save.
And Hungerford wrapped it up with another delightful finish when Preen and Clark linked and Jarvis curled home a 25 yard angled effort to send the place buzzing.
Hungerford Town: Legg; Tyler, Jones, Day, John; Rees, Herring, Williams (Clark 70); Brown, Preen Jarvis. Subs: Goodger, Boardman, Bignall, Rusby.
Hemel Hempstead Town: Henly; Asafu-Adjaye, Kaloczi, Rose (Mendy 60), Kelly; McNamara (Weiss 64), Richens, Corcoran, Potton; Robinson, Neilson (Stonnell 88) . Subs: Spring.
DARTFORD goalkeeper Deren Ibrahim was the match-winner as the Kent side scored 2-0 win over Hungerford at the Princes Park stadium on Saturday.
It was Ibrahim’s 65 yard free kick hoisted into the box that bounced over opposite number George Legg in the 80th minute, when Hungerford were on course to bring back at least a point.
Nicholas Bignall had wasted two clear chances and Ibrahim had also saved from Luke Williams as Hungerford soaked up Dartfiordls pressure and broke with increasing threat. And it all looked like working until Ibrahim punted forward a straightforward ‘hammer’ towards the box that deceived Legg.
Hungerford tried to chase the game but a second goal from Alex Brown three minutes from time secured the points.