Tring Athletic visited Rothwell Corinthians in the second round of the FA Vase and came away with a 3-3 draw after extra-time – meaning the two sides will meet again tonight in the replay at The Grass Roots Stadium.
Athletic created numerous chances, especially in the second half, and will be disappointed to have conceded two goals from set pieces; one of which was scored by home keeper Brad Wilson in the fourth minute of stoppage time and with the home side down to ten men.
The first 20 minutes of the game was uneventful, however Athletic opened the scoring following a cross by Lee Stobbs, the ball finally falling to Chris Vardy in the box to score which enabled him to carry on his goal a game sequence.
A number of chances fell to Athletic after this, however the home side finally tested keeper Matt Evans after 30 minutes when the impressive Jordan Henson shot from fully 35 yards. Corinthians then had a brief period of domination just before half time but created very little.
Athletic came out for the second half with more determination and were unlucky not to score again when Kieran Turner fired over in the 48th minute.
Following this Corinthians then equalised. A free-kick was conceded midway inside Athletic’s half on the left. Jordan Henson’s low shot eluded all the players in front of him and the despairing dive of keeper Matt Evans then hit the far post before nestling in the goal.
Athletic came straight back and dominated possession. Chances fell to Chris Vardy and then Sam Joliffe headed straight at the keeper following a free-kick by Lee Stobbs.
Corinthians were relying on quick breaks and won their first corner of the game after 67 minutes but Athletic maintained the pressure with Jack Sunderland shooting wide from an angle and Kieran Turner shooting straight at keeper Brad Wilson.
Finally Athletic deservedly scored. A-through ball found Kieran Turner, the ball ran kindly for him allowing him to fire into an unguarded goal.
The referee had cautioned a number of Rothwell players for dissent and in the 87th minute were down to 10 men following a second yellow card.
Athletic then conceded another free-kick four minutes into stoppage time. Corinthians threw everyone into the penalty area. The ball was played long, Athletic were unable to clear, and the ball bounced around before home keeper Brad Wilson got the final touch, guiding the ball into an open goal.
Virtually from the kick off the referee then blew for full time.
Within seven minutes of the first period of extra-time Athletic were behind for the first time in the game. A high ball was played into the area when Jack Sunderland, who was vying for the ball, was adjudged to have bundled over a home player. Henson made no mistake from the spot.
Athletic then showed great resolve creating a couple of chances but to no avail.
The second period of extra-time saw Athletic push forward more determinedly and they were duly rewarded with a penalty following a handball by a defender; Sam Joliffe showing great composure before sending the keeper the wrong way.
Athletic probably felt they should have won the game after creating so many chances, but credit to Rothwell who fought back and could have won the match in extra-time.
It was a difficult game to play in as the pitch was very bumpy, however Athletic now look forward to entertaining Rothwell Corinthians in the replay tonight.
Rothwell Corinthians: Brad Wilson,Jordan Ainsworth,Luke Phillips, Kalon Peniasko, Ben Johnson (c),Tom Johnson (Kyle Locklin 56), Joey Wright (Oliver Magee 85), Dom Page, Rob Foster, Jordan Henson, Merson Styles.
TAFC: Matt Evans, Lee Stobbs (Ryan Sturges 65), Kevin McManus, Dan Steadman (c), Ollie Hogg, Luke Dunstan (Stuart Stedman 108), Sam Joliffe, Chris Vardy, Kieran Turner, Jack Sunderland, Chris Mason (Jack Westlake 79).