Highgate won the battle of the two top 6 clubs on Tuesday evening and the game was settled in the latter part of the second half with all three goals coming in a five minute spell. Sphinx had quickly levelled after Highgate had opened the scoring but Highgate promptly regained the lead and saw out the game to take the points.
Coventry Sphinx had a strong looking side out on the pitch with Jamie Towers and Chris Sterling returning to the team after missing the Bromsgrove Sporting game. The match developed into a bit of a battle with neither side managing to seriously test the keepers but Highgate were having the better of things and looked most likely to find a way through the defence. Sphinx keeper Jake Allingan was exceptional with his catching and dealt with a number of high balls into the box to end Highgate attacks. The first half saw the defences very much on top and it was no surprise to see the interval come with no goals.
HALF TIME: COVENTRY SPHINX 0 HIGHGATE UTD 0
The second half continued in a similar vein although Sphinx were showing some intermittent attacking threat. Ryan Harkin was having a quiet game by his recent standards but Sphinx were struggling to get any decent service into him. A Callum Woodward tackle won the ball and sent Harkin on his way towards goal. Harkin dribbled his way into the six yard box where the Highgate keeper did well to palm away his shot that had deflected up off a defender. Faulkner tried his luck from long range too and a good high save kept out his effort. Highgate were having plenty of the game and were getting more shots away but their lack of accuracy meant Allingan was largely untroubled so far. A bit of quality from Highgate saw them take the lead on 70 minutes and in all fairness, they had deserved the lead on the balance of play. Corey Currithers received the ball to the left of the penalty area and lifted an excellent shot over and past Allingan to give Highgate the lead. That sparked Sphinx into life and they responded with an equaliser on 72 minutes. The move started with Sterling holding the ball up and turning to send Towers away down the right. Towers did brilliantly to get to the by-line and fire the ball across the face of goal where HARKIN was lurking at the back post to fire in the leveller. That was Harkin’s 20th league goal of the season and it was a real poachers goal. It appeared to be game on now but Highgate soon removed any thoughts of a come back with Captain Arron Brown driving in the winner from the edge of the box. There was no coming back from that 75th minute goal for Sphinx and Highgate went on to take the points and complete the league double over Coventry Sphinx.
FULL TIME: COVENTRY SPHINX 1 HIGHGATE UTD 2
COVENTRY SPHINX MAN OF THE MATCH: SCOTT LOWER
Goalkeeper Jake Allingan did well again and his judgement of crosses was outstanding. Callum Woodward lead by example again and even got a nasty looking cut to his head for his trouble. The defence were overworked tonight but they performed well. The two full backs, Scott Lower and Aaron Stringfellow gave us their usual consistent display and my choice for the Man of the Match is Captain Scott Lower.
COVENTRY SPHINX TEAM: ALLINGAN, LOWER, STRINGFELLOW, CAIRNS (Dakouri 74 mins), QUIRKE, GUEST, TOWERS, WOODWARD, HARKIN, STERLING (Downes 80 mins), FAULKNER (Deehan 85 mins)
Updated 20:47 - 7 Feb 2018 by Sharon Taylor