Injury Time Penalty Gives K’s All The Points
It took an injury time penalty, but Kingstonian grabbed their third win of the season with a 2-1 defeat of Leatherhead. Nathaniel Pinney’s 92nd minute spot kick sent Louis Wells in the host’s goal the wrong way to grab the three points, after both teams failed to trouble the opposition defence in a scrappy second half.
The opening 45 minutes was punctuated by two individual moments of magic. Andre McCollin provided the first to open the scoring, latching on the Chris Henry’s counter-attack to leave his defender for dead before smashing the ball past Wells. Kingstonian’s lead lasted just three minutes. There looked to be no danger when Vas Karagiannis picked up the ball with his back to goal 25 yards out, but one turn, a shift of the ball and arrow into the top corner later the scores were level thanks to one of the best you’ll see this season.
Chances came and went in the first half. Karagiannis provided the biggest threat for the hosts, twice firing over when in good positions, while McCollin should have done better after beating the Tanner’s backline before firing over.
The second half was a more sedate affair. Both teams enjoyed long spells of possession in the opposition half, but obdurate defensive performances prevented any real opportunities. Kingstonian struggled to open up the defensive pair of Bruce and Nnamani, and resorted to sideways passing and long balls as they suffered a rare lack of attacking creativity. At the other end of the field, the performances of Matt Drage and Alan Inns snuffed out any lingering threat to K’s unbeaten record, as Inns won every tackle on the ground and Drage dominated aerial battles.
A late tactical switch from Tommy Williams saw Daniel Sweeney pop up on the left-hand side of midfield. Sweeney linked up nicely with McCollin and Josh Casey to find a rare chink in the Leatherhead back four. Steve Laider took full advantage, bursting into the box and when his cross was blocked by the arm of Richard Avery the referee showed no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Pinney was given the honours from last season’s penalty taker McCollin and his effort was never in doubt to spark celebrations behind the goal. Kingstonian may not have deserved the win, and Leatherhead’s efforts should have merited a point, but none of the team, coaching staff, fans or league table seemed to mind.
Match report by Jamie Cutteridge.