Blissett keeps Harriers in play-off picture

Harrier 2, Welling 0

BOSS Gary Whild saluted substitute Nathan Blissett for helping Harriers stay in the Skrill Premier play-off race with a vital victory over Welling United.

Blissett pounced shortly after Michael Gash had put his side ahead in the 77th minute.

Whild said: “I’m pleased for Bliss. There’s something there potentialwise. He gets a few goals, he’s not somebody who hasn’t scored.

“He’s come on today and he’s woke everybody up I thought. He’s a presence, he was chasing things and that gives everybody a lift.

“I thought it was a great goal. It was a great ball in from Callum Gittings and you don’t see many goals like that up on the back stick and powered in past all the defenders, so fair play to him.”

Gash and Blissett hit the target shortly after Aggborough hitman Amari Morgan-Smith had seen his penalty kick expertly saved by diving goalkeeper Lee Butcher.

Harriers’ win moved them up two places in the table to ninth, six points away from a play-off slot with four matches left to play.

Although Whild’s men were unable to break through in the first half they went near to scoring through Gash, Adrian Cieslewicz and Nick Wright.

Leading markman Gash’s two near misses arrived within the space of a minute with his first effort being well pushed away by Butcher and the second flying narrowly over the bar.

The alert Butcher then neatly clutched a drive from Cieslewicz and then followed up by sticking out a foot to stop a deflected shot by Wright from find the net.

The Wings made a bright start to the second half, but then started to struggle after Butcher had saved a 67th minute penalty by Morgan-Smith, who had been brought down inside the box by Blaine Hudson.

Harriers, who won 2-1 at Welling in September, took a big step towards securing the ‘double’ over their visitors when Gash cracked the ball in after a shot from Jack Byrne had rebounded off Butcher. It was his 14th goal of the season.

Determined Harriers made sure of pocketing three priceless points when splendid work by substitute Gittings ended in Blissett heading in from close range in the 84th minute.

Delighted Whild said: “I don’t think we were at our best in the first half, but we still managed to create two or three chances. As soon as we got the goal we upped it a gear and we ran out comfortable winners.”

HARRIERS: Lewis 6; L. Vaughan 7, Dunkley 6, Grimes 7, Demetriou 6 (Gittings, 75, 6); Cieslewicz 6 (Morgan-Smith, 56, 6), O.Keefe 7, Byrne 6, Bell 7; GASH 8, Wright 6 (Blissett, 53, 6). Subs not used: N. Vaughan, Verma.

WELLING: Butcher; Fazakerley, Hudson, Taylor, Obersteller; Beautyman, Wakefield, Healey; Sho-Silva, Lafayette, Ajala (Bender, 56). Subs not used: Turner, Karagiannis, Day.

Referee: Adam Bromley (Devon).

Attendance: 1,882 (49).

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