A stunning left foot volley from Charlie Joy in the 53rd minute saw Biggleswade United take all three points at Hadley on Monday night.
The goal, that had every spectator on their feet applauding, was enough to see Cristian Colas’ side win 1-0 and move up to seventh in the table, and with three games left in the bag against bottom half opposition, a top ten place now looks to be a reality rather than a target.
Despite Hadley having now to play four games per week to catch up on their fixture backlog, they were anything but jaded and manager, Micky Hazard, can feel justifiably proud of his players who put in a hard shift for the full 90 minutes.
The opening 20 minutes saw both sides struggle to get their game going with the poor playing surface preventing either side from playing their normal passing game. However, first knockings fell to United as Kane Farrell hit a low cross in to the six yard area but front man, Charlie Black, was still at the bus stop waiting.
Charlie Evans-Critchley then tried his luck from distance to bring a well taken save from Hadley’s Charlie Mann and from the resulting corner kick United skipper Lee Bilcock headed over.
Hadley’s best chance of the half came in the 24th minute when their impressive playmaker, Tom Milton, broke through the United ranks but was denied by the alert Tom Wyant who palmed over.
Hadley were fortunate to keep 11 men on the park in the 30th minute when a lunging tackle on the effervescent John McFarlin resulted in yellow for the offender while the young American must have been taken back to his college days facing a giant quarter back.
Hadley’s Mann made the save of the half in the 38th minute when Black sent a sublime overhead strike goalwards and despite Mann being unsighted by a crowded area he managed to pull out a superb reflex save.
James Cooper almost gave United the half time lead when he latched on to a cross field pass from Nick Elliott but it flew just wide of the upright.
A change in formation at the break saw substitute Joy replace Liam Sweeney to give more options in United’s attacking play. And with eight minutes of the restart it paid off. A wonderful long ball across the face of the Hadley penalty area from Tom Bryant was inch perfect for Joy who let the ball sit up nicely for himself and then fire in to the top corner of the net from 20 yards out giving Mann absolutely no chance.
United were forced in to their second change of the night on the hour mark when Elliott fell awkwardly and although managing to carry on for a further five minutes a twisted ankle saw him replaced by Matt Cooper.
With time and the game slipping away from them, Hadley started to push players forward and in the 73rd minute Wyant pulled off a Bankseyesque one handed save to deny Nick Chrysanthou an equaliser.
A welcome return for Luke Jones saw him enter the fray with ten minutes to go and although he collected a yellow card with two minutes he steadied the United ship to see them safely home to harbour and all three points.
This Saturday United play host to Colney Heath and on Tuesday night welcome Harefield United.