Hill’s free kick earns side share of spoils
HENLEY TOWN came from 3-1 down to secure a point at KIDLINGTON YOUTH U18s last Sunday.
Henley skipper Lou Colam was a commanding presence in organising the defence into a tight cohesive unit. However, following a defensive error, the Henley back line were punished when the hosts took the lead after 14 minutes.
Henley replied with attacking play from midfield duo Chloe Rogers and Hannah Palmer. A drop ball decision enabled Georgia Hill to send a perfectly weighted ball to Natalie O’Driscoll to equalise.
On the half-hour mark a controversial challenge on Henley defender Kati Friend went unpunished and soon after the hosts broke away to score and go 2-1 up.
Sensing Henley’s frustration and taking advantage of their run of luck, Kidlington then scored a third goal.
Undeterred, Henley dug deep and in the absence of injured defenders Daley and Houghton, Jen Candilio performed well out of her usual midfield position at right back, making some crucial challenges to frustrate Kidlington.
Just before half-time Henley pulled a goal back when a goal kick was intercepted by Hill who found Hannah Palmer who coolly slotted past the keeper to make it 3-2.
In the second half Kira Macaskill came on to help shore up the defensive midfield, linking with Zaya Carter and playmaker Gemma Tominey to supply chances to the Henley attack.
The visitors seemed to find their rhythm with much more connecting play in the second half.
Winger Lottie Willson made some good runs down the right, outpacing the Kidlington defence and creating some dangerous chances.
More good through balls from Rogers and Hill and some silky footwork from O’Driscoll put pressure on the hosts.
Eliza Carpenter gave another good performance making several well-timed challenges and fine saves to keep Henley in the game.
Kidlington’s attack continued to be disrupted as play was closed down quickly and Henley’s back line of Friend, Rilett Colam and Candilio kept the hosts at bay.
Following a handball decision, Kidlington were unable to capitalise as a free kick just outside the box was blocked by Rilett.
Tominey was brought down in a hard challenge to give Henley a free kick. Georgia Hill stepped up to fire the ball around the wall into the top corner to equalise.
Minutes later another foul on Chloe Rogers gave Hill another chance to sneak ahead from a free kick, but this time the ball found the hands of the keeper.