Naylor’s goal is enough to get Heanor back on track

MATCHWINNER -- Joe Naylor, who headed the only goal of the game to give Heanor Town all three points.
MATCHWINNER -- Joe Naylor, who headed the only goal of the game to give Heanor Town all three points.

A solitary goal by outstanding midfielder Joe Naylor was enough for high-riding Heanor Town to grind out a 1-0 victory at home to Bardon Hill in the Midland League, Premier Division.

After their crushing 7-2 reverse at the hands of fellow title-chasers Hereford the previous week, Heanor were keen to return to winning ways to stay second in the table.

They duly dominated their mid-table visitors, forcing Bardon goalkeeper Robert Peet into several fine saves to keep the score down. And although there was only one goal in it, there was no doubt Heanor deserved all three points.

In front of a crowd of 141, Peet was finally beaten 11 minutes into the second half when a corner by Cory Bowler was met by Naylor, who headed home.

Bowler himself had been on the end of the game’s first chance back in the first minute when shooting wide. And as the home side kept up the pressure, impressive striker Nathan Benger had an effort kicked off the line.

The chances continued to flow, with Peet denying Benger, Nick Hall, Chris Bettney, Kieran Debrouwer and Jay Cooper.

At the other end, goalkeeper Scott Whittingham, who was brought in to replace Jamie Hannis, was rarely tested, but made a smart save late on when Bardon also hit the bar on a breakaway.

HEANOR LINE-UP -- Whittingham/ Marriott, Shaw, Bettney, Hall, Booker, Cooper, Naylor, Benger, Debrouwer, Bowler. SUBS: Johnson (for Bowler 60), Foster (for Benger 80), Edridge, Hawes, Hannis.