Rovers revival seals derby
Football: Non-League round-up
Friday 27 December 1996
The majority of the huge crowd were hoping that the home side, Kidderminster Harriers, would collect another three points to extend their lead at the top of the table. It did not work out like that, however, as Bromsgrove Rovers came back from a goal behind to snatch a 2-1 victory thanks to a winner two minutes from time.
It looked good for Harriers when a Lee Hughes header put them a goal up three minutes before half-time, following a well-worked move involving Steve Prindiville, Neil Doherty and Ian Olney, the former Aston Villa striker. Rovers hit back, though, in the second half and a header from Darren Grocutt brought the scores level after 70 minutes. Then, amid a goalmouth scramble, Mark Crisp pounced for the late decider.
Despite their unexpected defeat, Kidderminster still lead the Conference by a nine-point margin, as second-placed Macclesfield Town saw their game at Altrincham called off. Third-placed Morecambe also lost their derby at Southport to the bad weather but fourth-placed Stevenage Borough, the defending champions, did manage to beat the elements. Barry Hayles gave Stevenage an early lead but Slough's veteran striker, Gary Abbott, soon equalised. Corey Browne put Borough ahead again but Abbott's second goal earned Slough a 2-2 draw, with all the goals coming in the first half. Woking dropped down to seventh place after going down to a 3-2 defeat at Hayes.
Another fine crowd of 2,537 watched Gresley Rovers, the Dr Martens League leaders, gain a 3-2 win in the derby at Burton Albion, Mark Hurst snatching the winner in the 85th minute to complete a stirring comeback from two goals down. Third-placed Gloucester had a crowd of 2,154 for their derby against Cheltenham, who lost 2-1 to two late goals from Dale Watkins after Jamie Victory had put the visitors ahead.
In the UniBond League, the leaders, Leek, were frozen off at Alfreton so Hyde cut the gap to three points with a 2-0 win over Buxton, with Paul Cox and Ged Kimmins on target. Third-placed Blyth were held 1-1 at home by Guiseley. Steve Pyle put the home side ahead but Des Hazel, the former Sheffield Wednesday midfielder, equalised.
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