Sedgemore rescues the day for Lynn
King's Lynn 2, Hemel Hempstead 2The Linnets clawed their way back from two goals down to claim a point in this topsy-turvy Southern Premier fixture at The Walks on Saturday.
King's Lynn 2, Hemel Hempstead 2
The Linnets clawed their way back from two goals down to claim a point in this topsy-turvy Southern Premier fixture at The Walks on Saturday.
Harry Hunt had given the Tudors a two-goal start completely against the run of play before Danny Bloomfield rounded off a crazy five-minute spell at the end of the first half with his 15th strike of the season.
It appeared that Lynn would gain nothing from the match but Ben Sedgemore had other ideas and scrambled home a 93rd minute equaliser much to the delight of the 1,230-strong crowd.
Following the game club chairman Ken Bobbins confirmed that a deal had been struck with the 32-year-old Sedgemore that would see him remain at The Walks for the rest of the season.
"Ben has come in and done a terrific job for the team and in my opinion is the type of midfield player we have been looking for," he said.
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A buoyant Bobbins was also full of praise for the Lynn faithful who turned out in their largest numbers of the season to date. "We asked for them to come down and support and they haven't let us down," he said. "Being a 12th man is a much-used phrase but today I have no doubt that is was them who were responsible for that late equaliser. Their passion and commitment was acted upon by the team and they were duly rewarded."
Michael Frew was restored to the starting line-up at the expense of Steve Melton and Jack Defty passed a late fitness test on a back problem which meant Matt Nolan was amongst the substitutes.
The start of the match followed the pattern of many of the Linnets' last few outings with Keith Webb's men on the front foot and attacking with pace. Joe Francis was giving his marker Simon Sweeney a torrid time and his continued probing should have resulted in early Lynn goals.
Frew sent in a dipping shot which warmed Ian Brown's hands and Sedgemore scuffed his effort from 20 yards wide. Bloomfield tested Brown again before Defty was fouled, which allowed Francis to curl a free kick around Hemel's defensive wall but wide of Brown's post.
Sedgemore was cautioned for upending Oliver Burgessand from the free-kick Dean Cracknell floated a hanging ball into the home penalty area where Hunt headed in from six yards unopposed. A minute before the break, Hunt had his second as home hesitancy was punished and the youngster was allowed to toe-poke home from four yards.
Almost from the restart, the Linnets got a goal backas a short Francis pass found Bloomfield in space and he coolly lobbed an advancing Brown as the home side finally broke their duck.
The industrious Sedgemore presented Greg Crane with a gilt-edged chance early in the second half which the tall defender headed directly at Brown from close range.
Frew's free-kick narrowly cleared the bar before Cracknell tested Scott Howie on a rare counter-attack. With 17 minutes remaining, Cracknell saw red for his second yellow of the afternoon as he left Lynn full-back Dean West in a crumpled heap on the touchline.
Tudors' substitute Josh Sozzo almost benefited from Mark Warren's hamstring injury, as Lynn's captain pulled up suddenly which allowed the pacy visiting forward to bare down on Howie, who was gratefully to the alert Crane whose last-ditch tackle cleared the ensuing danger.
Sozzo fired over the bar moments later before Sedgemore finally grabbed a Lynn equaliser with what was their 24th effort of the afternoon.
Afterwards boss Webb lamented his side's defending prior to the interval. "We had 90 seconds of madness where we played like rabbits in headlights and that has cost us dearly," he said. "In my view, aside from that we have played very well and played a top six side off the park.
"We should have converted more of those chances we created but we are all aware of that.
"Someone just needs to step up and take the extra bit of responsibility in front of goal. Despite that we have still remained positive and created numerous good goal-scoring chances and that is all I can ask for."
King's Lynn: Howie, West (Turner 84), Chapman, Warren (Melton 80), Crane, Camm, Frew, Sedgemore, Defty, Bloomfield, Francis. Unused substitutes: Nolan, Lake, Murray.
Hemel Hempstead: Brown, Sweeney, Coulson, Cavill (Sozzo 76), Yeboah, Sinclair, Burgess (Martin 63), Cracknell, Hunt (Gearing 76), Roberts, Edgeworth. Unused substitutes: Nicholls, Heron.
Referee: Mr Miller (Kettering).
Bookings - King's Lynn: Sedgemore; Hemel Hempstead: Cavill, Hunt, Roberts, Yeboah.
Sent off: Hemel Hempstead - Cracknell.