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Impressive Harriers gore Stags
5:16pm Saturday 12th January 2013 in News
Mansfield 0, Harriers 2
DETERMINED Harriers deservedly earned all three points at their play-off chasing rivals, despite Sean Clancy's harsh sending off.
Goals for full-backs Mickey Demetriou and Lee Vaughan had given the Aggborough outfit a well-earned lead at half-time.
Harriers' then defended solidly as the Stags bossed the second half, even when substitute Clancy was shown a straight red card for a foul on Lee Beevers.
Victory was also the perfect way to start life without striker Jamille Matt, who had completed his big money move to Fleetwood yesterday.
Harriers started impressively and Marvin Johnson raced onto Ryan Rowe's clever pass and delivered a ball which Lee Beevers desperately cleared.
Matt Green was the Stags' dangerman and he saw a rasping low shot cannon off Harriers' bottom left post.
Demetriou came close for the visitors in the eighth minute but his free-kick was just a fraction too high and arrowed over the bar.
Anthony Malbon spurned a good chance to open the scoring. A slip by former Harriers captain Exodus Geohaghon allowed James Vincent to break into the box and find the striker, who from 12-yards out fired wide.
Rowe saw a tame effort well saved by Marriott, while Demetriou made a fine block to deny Anthony Howells.
But Demetriou opened the scoring in the 22nd minute with a sublime free-kick, which curled into the bottom right corner. Harriers then powered into a 2-0 lead three minutes later. Lee Beevers gave the ball away and Vaughan let fly with a stunning strike from a tight angle which had the beating of Marriott.
But Mansfield nearly found an instant reply and keeper Danny Lewis had to get a hand to John Dempster's far post header from a corner.
But Harriers continued to threaten and from a Johnson cross, Demetriou saw his far post header crash off the woodwork.
Mansfield nearly pulled a goal back in injury time. Green's rising shot crashed off the bar and bounced out but the striker fired his follow-up wide.
Stags boss Paul Cox made a double substitution at the start of the second half, with Colin Daniel Richie Sutton replacing Louis Briscoe and John Thompson.
Daniel created a chance in the 51st minute with a strong run but he dragged his shot wide.
The home side were piling on the pressure and Lindon Meikle sliced an effort off target.
Mansfield continued to test Harriers' resolute defence and Lewis made a comfortable save to deny Geohaghon's header.
Burr decided to make two changes in the 71st minute, with Rowe replaced by Nathan Blissett and Sean Clancy on for Johnson.
But Clancy lasted four minutes after he was shown a straight red card for a challenge on Beevers to leave Harriers reduced to 10 men.
That only encouraged the home side to pile forward in attack and win a series of free-kicks and corners.
Lewis made a find save to block Adam Murray's overhead kick.
Harriers' shot-stopper then showed fine reactions as he punched away substitute Matt Rhead's close range header.
But for all their pressure, Harriers' well-drillled defence kept the hosts at bay to make it mine wins in ten games.
Harriers: Lewis, Vaughan, Demetriou, Dunkley, Gowling, Storer, Gittings, Vincent, Malbon (Shakes, 87), Rowe (Blissett, 71), Johnson (Clancy, 71).
Subs not used: Williams, N Vaughan.
Mansfield: Marriott, Thompson (Thompson, 46), Dempster, Beevers (Rhead, 78), Geohaghon, Howells, Clements, Murray, Meikle, Green, Briscoe (Daniel, 46).
Subs not used: Wright, Stevenson Referee: Declan Ford (Lincoln).
Attendance: 2,405 (208