Dramatic end as Cannons escape with a draw....
Courtesy of Hythe Town FC website
A truly dramatic end to the game that saw the Cannons give away a two-goal lead and fall behind deep into injury time only for Eli Benoit to pop with an equaliser with the very last action in a 3-3 draw against Westfield at Reachfields on a humid Saturday afternoon.
The early exchanges in the game were very calm compared to what was to follow as the visitors waited sixteen minutes for their first effort as a shot from Kai Hamilton-Olise was saved by the legs of Hythe keeper Will Godmon. Westfield were then awarded a free kick but that was fired high over the bar by Troy Timothy. The hosts had to wait 23 minutes before their first attempt as Scott Doe sent in a cross that was headed over by Kane Phillip.
However, two minutes later a deep cross from the from Liam Smith from the right found Frannie Collin at the far post who rose above the Westfield defence to head the ball down and into the corner of the net. Both Afo Soyemi-Owlade and Azeez Alabi then sent efforts over the Hythe bar before, at the other end, deep into injury time Collin pulled a shot wide.
The visitors continued to struggle to hit the target as the game progressed as a cross from Afo Soyemi-Owlade found Hamilton-Olise who blasted well over when it seemed easier to score. Soyemi-Owlade then pulled a shot wide before Timothy hit a free kick straight at Godmon. On 53 minutes the Cannons increased their lead as a pinpoint pass from Darren Oldaker went straight into the path of Phillip who finished well to make it 2-0.
The game, which previously been played in a great spirit, then took a nasty turn as it all seemed to kick off around the bench area. A fracas followed which ended with the sending off of Phillip, unused substitute Jarred Trespaderne and Hythe manager Steve Watt. The Westfield assistant manager also saw red with it all leaving a nasty taste in the mouth. It will be interesting to see the video evidence to ascertain what actually happened.
This unsettled the hosts and on 68 minutes Soyemi-Owlade rolled an attempt against the upright and then Timothy blasted over. A minute into injury time Westfield pulled one back as Soyemi-Owlade broke through and fired home and then a minute later the scores were level when Kai Davis blasted the ball in. The Hythe defence were now shell shocked, and another goal followed a minute later as IK Hill sent the ball into the corner of the net.
However, somehow with the last action of the half, Benoit headed in to take the game to unlikely replay on Tuesday evening at Westfield. Kick-off will be 7:45pm.