10 man Hawks see off Folkestone
Harlow Town took another important step towards moving up the table with a well-deserved win against high-flying Folkestone Invicta.
The visitors took the lead when Adam Yusuff finished from close range, before Junior Dadson’s cross forced the first of two own goals. Ibrahima Sonko then hit home a trademark header just before the break to send the Hawks into the lead.
Harlow added a third when a deflection off Matthew Newman flew into his own net. The game could have turned when David Hughes was shown a straight red card with a third of the game to play, but despite the visitors adding a second in added time, the Hawks held on for another vital three points.
Folkestone started brightly and had an early penalty shout within just two minutes when a shot struck Ibrahima Sonko’s arm in the area, but the ball was hit powerfully from up close and the referee waved away the appeal.
Harlow were creating chances of their own, and when Toby Ajala was played in by Alex Read he just dragged the effort wide of the post.
After a lengthy stoppage brought about by an injury to one of the referee’s assistants, Alex Read then saw his own shot saved from a tight angle by Invicta stopper Tim Roberts.
The visitors went ahead when they struck on the counter-attack on 24 minutes. Adam Yusuff turned home Johan Tor Horst’s centre from close range against the run of play.
The Hawks were applying the pressure and creating chances, and Toby Ajala put another shot just wide before another effort was blocked by Matthew Newman inside the area.
Alex Read was also making a nuisance of himself, also seeing a powerful volley blocked by Newman when it was heading towards goal.
Two goals just before half-time sent the Hawks into the break ahead. Junior Dadson broke down the left, and when he sent a low cross into the box Invicta captain Callum Davies turned the ball into his own net.
Ibrahima Sonko then headed home a Tommie Fagg corner from underneath the crossbar, beating the goalkeeper to the ball to nod in and take the lead for the Hawks.
It could have been three when, with the final action of the half, Alex Read chipped over the defence, but Junior Dadson smashed the volley into the side netting.
HT: Harlow Town 2-1 Folkestone Invicta
Folkestone were first to try their luck in the second period, and when Adam Yusuff’s set off on a mazy run, he couldn’t finish it off as his shot was well saved by David Hughes.
Harlow looked to have sewn up the game when they made it three on 59 minutes, and it came from a second own goal. James Baker headed a corner down into the six yard box, and it hit Matthew Newman, wrong-footed the goalkeeper who was moving the other way and went into the back of the net.
The Hawks were looking comfortable, but they were reduced to ten men on 66 minutes. Goalkeeper David Hughes came a long way out of his goal to clear a through-ball, and in a flurry of feet the referee decided that he took man before ball and brandished the red card.
The opportunity was there for a comeback, but the visitors failed to make use of their advantage. Kieron McCann sent a decent shot goalwards from the edge of the area, but substitute goalkeeper Samuel Szymczyk got behind it to save.
The visitors pulled a goal back in the second minute of added time to set up a nervy finish when Johan Ter Horst broke through and slid home. It was too little, too late as Harlow inflicted a fourth straight league defeat on Invicta and sealed another important win.
FT: Harlow Town 3-2 Folkestone Invicta
The Hawks move up a place in the league table with the win, and now sit in 21st position with 21 points from 21 games.
Next up, Harlow travel to Staines Town on Tuesday 19th December. Kick off is at 7:45pm.