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Early Rowe strike sets up Harriers to bounce back
8:59am Sunday 6th January 2013 in News
Harriers 2, Barrow 0
HARRIERS buried Barrow with a quick-fire strike by Ryan Rowe and a late goal from Jamille Matt to bounce back into the Blue Square Bet Premier play-off zone.
The hard-earned win was the start of what Steve Burr’s hopes will the launchpad for another dazzling run of victories.
The Aggborough boss, whose side’s seven-match winning streak in the league ended when they lost 1-0 at home to Hereford United on New Year’s Day, said: “We’re looking to try to put a run together again so we can cement ourselves up there in the table.”
Harriers’ defeat against the Bulls cost them a top five spot which they regained thanks to Rowe and Matt, whose goals left the Bluebirds still battling to drag themselves off the foot of the table.
Burr’s boys, boosted by Rowe’s third minute opener, said: “In these types of games to get the start we did we couldn’t have asked for any more. Then the game seemed to go a bit flat. Things that we were trying weren’t coming off, but we stuck at it and in the end it was nice to see the second goal go in.
“We didn’t perhaps reach the levels that we have done over the last few weeks, but you’re going to get games like this where it’s going to be difficult. But the lads stuck at it and I’m sure we’ll look back on it as three good points.
“Barrow are, I think, better than their league position suggests which just shows you how tough this division is. We knew it was going to be tough, but the pleasing part was, after our defeat on New Year’s Day, to come back and get three points.”
Harriers, who have lost only twice in their last 21 league outings, went into the game eager to improve on their poor record against Barrow.
They had won just one of their previous ten meetings against the Bluebirds who drew 1-1 at home to the Aggborough outfit in early September.
Rowe paved the way for victory with an impressive 25 yarder following a pass from Callum Gittings.
It was a cracking way for the former Stourbridge front-runner to mark his return to the starting line-up for the first time since November with his tenth goal of the season.
He said: “It’s always nice to get on the scoresheet. It gives you the confidence to go on for the rest of the game when you get a goal that early.”
Harriers’ leading marksman added: “It doesn’t matter who scores as long as we win and get the three points. I want to be playing games and hopefully I can kick on to the end of the season.”
After Rowe’s goal the game failed to blossom and only a fine tip over by Harriers’ goalkeeper Danny Lewis failed to stop Tom Anderson from equalising with a header on the quarter of an hour mark.
Then, in the 71st minute, Barrow’s Sean McConville had a shot half stopped by Lewis before man-of-the-match Gowling cleared off the line.
Harriers, however, always had more of the possession and their efforts were richly rewarded again when Matt notched his eighth goal of the campaign with a header following a cross from Gittings.
Harriers: Lewis 7; L. Vaughan 6, Dunkley 7, GOWLING 8, Demetriou 6; Briggs 6, Gittings 7 (Williams, 86); Vincent 7; Shakes 6 (Johnson, 58, 6), Rowe 6 (Malbon, 73, 6), Matt 6. Subs not used: N. Vaughan, Blissett Barrow: Hurst; M. Pearson, Hessey, Anderson, Skelton; McConville (Jackson, 84), Owen (Rowe, 65), Harvey, Hunter, Rutherford; Boyes. Subs not used: S. Pearson, Flynn.
- Referee: Paul Rees (Somerset).
- Attendance: 1,703 (70).