Simon Wormull made one changes from the side who lost 2-0 at Carshalton Athletic on Good Friday, with Aaron Smith-Joseph replacing the injured Tommy Wood.
The game started in cagey fashion, with both sides struggling to create anything to write home about. The first real chance fell to Aaron Smith-Joseph, in the 12th minute, as his half volley flew high and wide following some wonderful control. In the 30th minute, Josh James was forced into a fine low save as he kept out James Hammond’s deflected strike. Just six minutes later, Joe Felix came close to giving the Hillians the lead, as he worked himself some space before firing wide of Lewis Carey’s right-hand post. In the 40th minute, Felix again caused Charles Banya problems before laying off to Dan Beck, who’s thunderous effort was punched clear by Carey. Moments later, Beck, once again, was in the thick of the action as he fired his cross agonisingly across the six-yard area and just out of the reach of Ross Murdoch. The half came to a close with Carey claiming a dangerous Michael Wilson free-kick.
The Hillians came out firing and with the way the other scores were going, knew that only a win would surfice. In the 49th minute, ASJ’s low strike was cleared off the line by Thomas Day. Former Hillian, Kieron Pamment came close, in the 52nd minute, but he could only direct his volley into the side netting. Simon Wormull introduced Charlie Bennett for the injured Boris Kipeya-Bonno and Farrell Ryder for Ross Murdoch in search of some added attacking impetus. In the 70th minute, Charlie Coppola could only scuff his effort wide following a sharp counter-attack from the Rooks. A big talking point in the game came in the 72nd minute, as ASJ had the ball in the back of the net, only for the referee to blow his whistle for a foul in the mist of the corner – much to the amazement of the Hillians supporters. In the 78th minute, the Hillians had their goal, as Captain Fantastic, Dan Beck headed home emphatically from ASJ’s cross to send the Green Elephants into delerium. However, Hillians hearts were broken ten minutes later, as substitute Olajuwon Adeyemo got the faintest of touches on Hammond’s in-swinging free-kick to send it beyond the outstreched James. The boys throw everything at the Rooks in the final knockings, but it just wasn’t meant to be.
A result that all but confirms our fate – despite it mathematically still being possible.
Our Match Sponsors, Mansell McTaggart gave the Hillians MOTM award to Dan Beck, who was fantastic all afternoon – leaving absolutely everything out on the pitch.
As has been a reoccuring theme this season, you Hillians fans were simply incredible. Thank you for your support thoughout the season – very, very special!
Next up, we conclude our Bostik Premier League campaign with a trip to Wingate.