RUSS Penn called Harriers’ 1-0 win over Kettering Town the team’s biggest victory of the season as they kept pace with the National League North promotion chasers.

Amari Morgan-Smith’s ninth goal of the campaign was enough to seal three points in challenging circumstances for the men from Aggborough.

The win – which kept the side fourth in the able and in touch with the likes of Brackley and Gateshead- was one achieved with very little glamour but plenty of gumption.

That evidently delighted Penn, who said it was the best of the bunch for his outfit so far – not least because it was achieved without Alex Penny (illness) and Sam Austin (injury) among others.

Having watched a changed side notch a vital result on challenging surface at Latimer Park, the Reds’ chief said: "This pitch is not conducive to play our style of football - I don't think it is conducive to play any style of football.

"We've had to come here, be men, be dominant and be physical, especially with the team we've played today due to nursing injuries, illnes and just fatigue.

"I am absolutely delighted with the group at the moment, and that is the biggest win of the season for me."

The only goal of the game came on 14 minutes and was arguably against the run of play after a bright start from the hosts. Ashley Hemmings had shot in the area and been denied by a good save, only for the marksman to slot home the loose ball to the delight of the away fans.

That was, in truth, one of few serious Harriers chances of the night, but it proved to be enough as the visiting back-line stood firm; Simpson saving to keep out Calder’s 34th minute header.

Harriers lost Keziah Martin before the break to injury and Kettering saw goalkeeper Davies leave on a stretcher to be replaced in goal by defender Connor Johnson.

Any expected onslaught on Johnson’s goal failed to materialise, though, with a Hemmings drive wide ten minutes from time the closest Harriers came to a second.

Kettering applied plenty of late pressure. In the final seconds of normal time the ball was in the Harriers net only for the goal to be disallowed for a foul, before a 94th minute save from Simpson thwarted them once more at the death.

Harriers take back-to-back wins into Saturday’s home league clash with Gloucester City at Aggborough (3:00pm).