The Hillians FA Trophy adventure came to an end following a 3-0 defeat at Canvey Island.
- Kouassi (51')
- Chatting (52')
- Hubble (60')
Jay Lovett’s men headed to Essex on the back of a much improved upturn in form but had their work cut out against Isthmian North league leaders Canvey Island. It was a fast start from the Gulls as they almost opened the scoring in the 3rd minute. Captain Jey Silva whipped a fine ball onto the head of Elliot Ronto who’s glancing header came off the inside of the far post and landed in Taylor Seymour’s grateful arms. After 15 minutes the islanders threatened again, Evans Kouassi broke away too easily down the left and forced a fine point blank save from Seymour. From the resulting passage of play, Seymour had to be alert to tip over a miscued Tobi Tinubu cross. Down the other end, the Hill were starting to show signs of life, Lewis Finney had a free kick blocked. The woodwork again came to Hills rescue as Matthew Price cut inside Charlie Kelly before unleashing a shot which was goal bound had Seymour not superbly touched it onto the bar. The game was starting to open up a bit and Lovett’s men were getting some joy on the counter, a cross to the back post fell for Jaden Perez but his effort was blocked before the rebound came to Lewis Taylor to strike but it was headed over by a Gulls defender. The Hill kept the pressure up and Charlie Kelly was next to try his luck but saw his shot deflected by a Yellows defender. Josh Spinks had to be alert at the back to head a Canvey effort off the line before in the closing stages of the first half, we should have taken the lead. Lewis Taylor had a low free kick brilliantly saved by Bobby Mason before we kept the ball alive and the ball sat up kindly for Pat Harding just yards from goal but he scooped his effort very uncharacteristically over the crossbar. The half came to an end with Lewis Taylor having his umpteenth effort blocked.
Canvey started the second half quickly, Elliot Ronto heading over a Conor Hubble corner. Harrison Chatting should have done better when he was found on the edge of the box but soon after, the hosts did open the scoring. Harry Pollard failed to clear a dangerous ball and headed it straight to Chatting, he played in Evans Kouassi who lobbed it over Seymour before sidefooting it into the empty net. Unfortunately for the Hillians, as the old saying goes, you are at your most vulnerable when you’ve just conceded, and so it proved again. Matthew Price chested a ball down for Harrison Chatting to beautifully control before absolutely leathering it past Seymour at his near post, giving him no chance. Canvey smelt blood and almost got a third but only Taylor Seymour’s feet denied Matthew Price. It was one way traffic in the second half, Price was desperate for a goal but his next attempt was well blocked. Reggie Ward has been a shining light for the Hill this season and he tried to inspire a comeback with a mazy run but in typical fashion his shot at the end of it was, you guessed it, blocked. Canvey put the nail in the coffin when Conor Hubble smashed a 25 yard free kick past a helpless Seymour, in what was a tremendous strike. After the third goal went in, the game was effectively over as Canvey tried to see it out professionally. They almost added a fourth but Seymour saved again from Price. Only some fantastic defending on the line preventing big centre half Michael Finneran from making it 4 from a corner. Heading into the last few minutes we almost pulled one back but Josh Spinks half volley was, predictably, blocked on the goal line.
A poor 10 minute spell for the Hillians sees them exit the FA Trophy.
We would like to thank our hoard of Hillians who travelled to Canvey to support the team, as always it’s greatly appreciated by everyone at the club.
Next up, we return to league action as we host Lancing on Saturday afternoon.