HERTS SENIOR COUNTY LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION
Despite beating the same opposition 6-0 two weeks ago the Eagles were unable to overcome a very ordinary Sarratt side and sloppy defending again cost them dearly.
Eagles went behind after only 15 minutes when the ball was booted long from the Sarratt half and Eagles defenders were caught too far upfield allowing a suspiciously offside Sarratt forward to charge down the centre of the pitch and easily beat Eagles keeper Dan Goad with a low shot into the corner of the net. Not long after Sarratt repeated the move but this time Goad made an excellent save to divert the ball wide of goal. Joy was shortlived because on the half hour Eagles failed to clear a free kick and an unmarked Sarratt forward netted easily from 6 yards.
Eagles then managed to press more strongly and Lee Pateman was unlucky to see a header for the top corner of the net well saved by the keeper. Soon after the keeper made a great diving save from a shot by Joe Humphries and the resulting corner was headed into the net from 8 yards by Eagles captain Ricky Small, making a long awaited return from injury. Just before half time eagles got the equaliser when Carl Williams converted a cross from Josh Coley.
Within a few minutes of the restart Eagles went behind again when the ball ran loose from a weak tackle in the penalty area and Sarratt were quicker to the ball to shoot home from near the penalty spot. The rest of the half was almost continuous Eagles pressure, hitting the cross bar twice and a post, but the Sarratt goal led a charmed life. Carl Williams broke through the centre and headed the ball over the advancing keeper, only for it to hit the bar and bounce back into play. The keeper then made a fine save to tip over a shot from Small. Lee Pateman headed a cross from Coley on to the top of the crossbar and Sarratt were limited to occasional quick breaks out of defence as eagles pressed forward. Goad had to make a great blocking save and then a fine diving save to stop Sarratt getting a fourth goal. Eagles sub Charlie Thake thought he had scored a few minutes from time when he beat the keeper with a low shot towards the corner of the net, but the ball was cleared off the goal line by a covering defender. In injury time Williams almost got his head to the ball to the far post a yard from goal but the keeper just managed to deflect the ball round the post and the Eagles last chance had gone.