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Chasetown FC sunk as Kidderminster Harriers sub fires a hat-trick

A masterclass in pace and finishing from Kidderminster Harriers substitute Joe Lolley was the difference as Chasetown FC were beaten 5-0 in this pre-season fixture.

A breath-taking half-hour of action that saw the Harriers sub net a hat-trick and he could easily have had four.

Lolley, who represented British Universities and Colleges in Russia in the summer for the World Summer University Games, took advantage of a tiring Scholars team who had put in a tremendous effort for an hour.

His first came on 70 minutes when he waltzed through the Chasetown defence and netted at the near post to put Kidderminster 3-0 up. Four minutes later, his side were 4-0 in front when another neat piece of skill created the space and Lolley coolly slotted past Ryan Price.

If his first two goals were pieces of individual skill and quick pace, his hat-trick strike in the final minute demonstrated confidence and technique, crisply volleying left footed beyond Price from inside the penalty area.

In fact, Lolley could and perhaps should have completed his hat-trick earlier. In the 85th minute, the youngster beat the offside trap, went round Price at the near post but dragged his shot wide of the far.

For the majority of the first half, Chasetown competed well and felt aggrieved at the referee on at least two occasions when striker Danny Smith appeared to be bundled to the ground by the last defender but no free kick was given.

In the early exchanges, Scholars winger Theo Robinson fired over the bar and Kidderminster keeper Danny Lewis had to palm over a chipped cross by the bubbly Lee Butler.

The deadlock was broken in the 23rd minute when Price misjudged a cross leaving Michael Gash the simplest of tap-ins to give the visitors the lead.

The home side should have been level five minutes before the interval. Persistence from Danny Smith put defender Josh Gowling under pressure and when he slipped, he prevented Smith from getting to the loose ball and the referee had no hesitation pointing to the spot. Grant Beckett assumed responsibility for the kick but seemed to change his mind whether to place or power his kick and Lewis made a relatively comfortable save to his right.

Up until conceding a second goal in the 56th minute, Chasetown were good value for keeping the score at 1-0 but the visitors class began to tell as the game wore on and they deservedly doubled their lead unpicking the home defence with neat passing before Dior Angus side-footed home.

Simon Brown forced a save from Harriers’ substitute keeper Nathan Vaughan, but that apart, the second half was reserved for the brilliance of Lolley.

Kidderminster Assistant Manager Gary Whild said after the game: “He [Lolley] is a lad we’ve known a bit about for some time but due to his summer commitments he’s not had much pre-season with us yet.

“The difference between the two sides today was the quality at either ends of the pitch. We knew it’d take time and it’d be hard to break down Chasetown but eventually we took our chances.”

Chasetown boss Craig Harris was quick to praise his side for the majority of the performance.

“We competed for an hour but you have to remember who we’re playing,” he explained. “They will be one of the favourites for the Conference title so there are plenty of positives for us to take from this game.

“The lad [Lolley] that came on is obviously a bit special but until then I thought we’d done really well to compete.”

Price, Slater, Keenan, Beckett (Agbor, 87 mins), Tesfa Robinson (Farmer, 61 mins), Teesdale, Butler (Westwood, 70 mins), Bragoli, Smith (Wellecomme, HT), Hay (Downing, 61 mins), Theo Robinson (Brown, HT). Subs not used: Forde, Watson.
Kidderminster Harriers: Lewis (Vaughan, 70 mins), Dance, Grimes (Johnson, HT), Gowling, Dunkley, Gittins (Williams, 73 mins), Byrne (Tolley, 54 mins), Angus (Fowler, 61 mins), Storer, Gash, Rowe (Lolley, 57 mins).

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