Stalemate at Hythe sees the Points Shared
By Stuart Morgan
Heath and Hythe played out a goalless draw as defences came out on top in the chase for a playoff place
Heath traveled to Hythe Town with the hope to avenge the deafeat suffered at Hanbury back in September when Zak Ansah struck an injury time winner.
Heath welcomed back Nathan Cooper but lost Byron Napper to the same flu bug doing the rounds at Hanbury currently.
Heath in their last two matches had given the opposition a two goal lead and today's clean sheet pleased manager Shaun Saunders who was happy to take a valuable point back to Hanbury.
The match saw two very even sides go toe to toe both playing to their strengths but ultimately defences coming out on top.
Josh Spinks had the first real effort of the match as a free kick in wasn't clear and his shot on the turn looked as if it was heading for the far corner before a well timed block .
The home side grew into the game playing very direct and at pace looking to feed the leagues current top scorer Zak Ansah, his effort on 11 minutes didn't trouble Josh Heyburn in the Heath goal.
Alex Laing then had two efforts in quick succession but one cleared the bar and the other comfortably saved, the home side responded with a good chance of their own but Josh Heyburn got down well to make the save and Nathan Cooper tidied up as the game stayed goalless.
A good move down the Heath right saw Max Miller pull the ball back on 25 minutes and find Alex Laing but his snap shot saw another good defensive block.
Hythe saw another effort saved by Heyburn and Miller at the other end couldn't beat Kamurasi in the Hythe goal as he made a good stop low down.
With 32 minutes played Heath thought they had opened the scoring as Melford Simpson got on the end of Callum Saunders' free kick and his header was well saved before Alex Laing bundled the loose ball over the line but the assistant referee had raised his flag and offside given against Laing.
The rest of the half played out without incident.
Half Time Hythe Town 0-0 Heath
The second half continued in the same vein as the first with both sides in the game and looking dangerous but defenses holding firm, the Heath partnership of Nathan Cooper and Josh Spinks continued to keep the league top scorer relatively quiet and full backs Kieron Rowe and Sean Roddy dealt brilliantly with the pacey and tricky wide men as well as providing support going forwards.
Ansah for Hythe did finally spring the offside trap but Heyburn was quickly out and the angle too tight to get any effort on target. Karly Akehurst had two efforts from distance with the first off target but the second blocked but shouts of a penalty quickly waved away.
With the match an hour old Sean Roddy had to react quickly in a crowded area to put in a fine block on a goal bound effort from the hosts. Hythe were enjoying a good spell and Zak Ansah had another effort that whistled past the post and dive of Heyburn.
Good overlapping play from Sean Roddy saw dangerous balls into the box half cleared and one of these fell to Karly Akehurst but his effort was harmlessly wide.
With 5 minutes remaining a flowing move at pace from Heath with Simpson, Laing, Louis and Akehurst involved saw the ball find Callum Saunders and his well struck effort needed turning over the bar.
A break in the last minute saw the ball go wide to Max Miller from Alex Laing and he tried to return the ball to Laing on the edge of the box but it was just behind him and couldn't make proper contact.
Full Time - Hythe 0-0 Heath
MOM - Josh Spinks dealt with the league top scorer all afternoon limiting his chances.
More photos of the match can be viewed on Grahame Lehkyj Flickr site by clicking HERE