Bedworth United 0 Stourbridge 3
The Glassboys retained top spot in the Premier Division Central with a solid and professional-like performance that included two nicely crafted goals to see off bottom of the table side Bedworth United and therefore complete a league double over the struggling Greenbacks.
Stourbridge made just one change to their starting line-up with Jordaan Brown returning after injury in place of fellow defender Aaron Hayden who had returned to Wolves at the expiry of his loan deal. Goalkeeper James Wren was declared fit enough to take a place on the bench, while Kaoridjane Attoumani and Ikouara Rydhel-Junior were also included amongst the substitutes with the likes of Birch, Powell and Westlake missing.
The visitors saw a lot of the ball in the early exchanges although young home custodian Adam Harrison was only called into action on one occasion when with two minutes played Greg Mills touched the ball back for Luke Benbow to let fly from around 30 yards out and he drew a parried save from the Bedworth stopper away to his right.
Bedworth gradually grew into the match and they carved out their first opening after 13 minutes with Jacob Whitmore sliding a decent pass into the run of Elliot Parrott, but as he was closed down, he poked his low shot wide of Niall Maher’s left-hand upright.
With 26 minutes gone the Glassboys recycled the ball from a half cleared corner with Paul McCone helping the ball forward by nodding it on into the path of Benbow who turned and cracked a 20-yard shot past the post. Three minutes later Leon Broadhurst tried his luck from a similar distance after being set up by Rob Thompson-Brown, however his effort cleared the crossbar.
Just past the half-hour mark though Stourbridge forged in-front. Aaron Forde did the spadework initially close to the left-hand touchline and finding Benbow with a tidy pass that the Stour front man turned into the run of Greg Mills who skipped away from his marker. He advanced into the left-hand side of the area and hit a low cross-shot that appeared to be running narrowly wide but Kaiman Anderson slid in at the far post to turn the ball over the line.
Mills was in the thick of the action again a minute later when he rifled a shot narrowly over and once more on 41 minutes to even greater effect. Bedworth’s Ricardo Dudley tried to shepherd the ball out of play for a goal-kick only for the persistence of Mills to pay off and he managed to win possession and keep the ball in play before dribbling into the box where he was bundled over by Dudley from behind as the defender tried to recover the situation. Mills got back up to take the penalty and he was successful from the spot although Harrison went the right way and got a hand to the ball.
Half-time Bedworth United 0 Stourbridge 2
The Glassboys made a rather sloppy start to the second period and Bedworth went close on 53 minutes with Alex Troke feeding Montel Gibson who flashed a shot past the far post. Three minutes later though the visitors had a great opportunity to virtually wrap things up when Benbow released Anderson away in the clear one on one with the keeper. He seemed to get the ball tangled up in his feet momentarily before advancing towards the box, but Harrison came out to narrow the angle and managed to block Anderson’s shot to keep his side in the game.
Twelve minutes later Anderson did have the ball in the net, but the assistant’s flag quickly ruled out his tap-in, however with 76 minutes gone Stourbridge mustered the third goal they deserved. Anderson laid the ball out to Forde and the Stour midfielder picked out Benbow with a precise low pass into the box and he buried a first time shot from around 12 yards out past a helpless Harrison to continue his recent hot streak.
Mills booked up a caution a short time later before the Glassboys began to ring the changes. Chekaine Steele and Tom Tonks came on for Mills and Forde after 76 minutes and Rydhel-Junior replaced Benbow six minutes later.
Bedworth might have grabbed a consolation goal on 88 minutes as Troke found Gibson and he worked room for a shot from the edge of the box, however his shot was fired straight at Maher.
A minute later at the other end Thompson-Brown tested Harrison with a high inswinging free-kick from just outside the left-hand edge of the area with the home keeper having to palm the ball away for a corner.
A satisfactory job done by the Glassboys who over a busy and testing festive period - that saw five league games in fifteen days -accumulated eleven points out of a possible fifteen and stretched their unbeaten run to twelve matches.
Stourbridge – Maher, Christophorou, Brown, McCone, Pierpoint, Forde, Anderson, Broadhurst, Benbow, Thompson-Brown, Mills
Subs – Steele (for Mills 76 mins), Tonks (for Forde 76 mins), Rydhel-Junior (for Benbow 82 mins), Attoumani, Wren (not used)
Booked – Mills
Attendance – 257
Updated 20:08 - 11 Jan 2019 by Nigel Gregg