Wingate knock out reigning FA Trophy champions Hornchurch
- Credit: Martin Addison
Ben Goode’s sudden death penalty save gave Wingate & Finchley a victory in the FA Trophy over holders Hornchurch FC after a 1-1 draw to seal a penalty shoot-out win.
After first half goals from Bilal Sayoud and Jordan Clark, penalties were required to settle the FA Trophy third Qualifying Round tie.
But Hornchurch goalkeeper Joe Wright’s penalty, the sixth for his side, and 12th overall, was saved.
Victory for Wingate takes them through to the first round of the Buildabase FA Trophy as they took revenge for the lost inflicted by Hornchurch the previous year.
Wingate opened the scoring against the run of play after forward Sayoud curled home a left-footed strike into the bottom corner on 16 minutes.
But the Urchins quickly restored parity with a goal from Clark, who fired past Blues ‘keeper Goode, having wriggled free from two challenges in the Wingate box.
Goode ensured the Blues went in level at half time after several saves, including a stunning close range stop in the 31st minute and a double save on the stroke of half time.
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The second half was a far more tense affair, and both sides received yellow cards in a frenetic second period, in which neither side was able to fashion a winner.
By the end of normal time the score was still 1-1, and penalties were required to separate the two sides, and determine who would make the first round of the competition.
Goode’s two penalty saves proved decisive as Wingate won the shootout 5-4 in sudden death after Hornchurch goalkeeper Wright’s attempt was saved by Goode.
Wright had saved a penalty earlier in the shootout himself, but his effort down the middle was saved by Goode, who stood firm in the centre of the goal to put his side through.
He said: “I saw his head go down and I noticed that as he started his run up he didn’t look left or right.
“I thought to myself, ‘I’ll stay in the middle’ and thankfully I didn’t look like an idiot.”
Wingate manager Marc Weatherstone was understandably elated with his team’s performance and heaped praise on Goode, who’s shootout heroics were pivotal in the Blue’s win.
He said: “I know how good he is in these situations, standing on the touch line I wasn’t nervous at all.”
“It’s always great to win against a good side like Hornchurch, but it makes it even more special when you beat the holders.”
Hornchurch beat National League North side Hereford 3-1 in May to lift the FA Trophy for the first time, and will be disappointed not to reach the tournament proper this time out.
The draw for the first round of the FA Trophy will take place on Monday, with games starting on Saturday, November 27.