Boreham Wood secured their National League survival for another season, with an impressive 0-1 victory away to promotion chasing Harrogate Town.  

Tom Champion netted the game’s only goal inside 10 minutes and the Wood then controlled the remainder of the match.

Luke Garrard made two changes from the Wood’s last league game, with Danny Woodards and Ryan Huddart coming into the side, in place of Charlie Cooper and George Legg.

The Wood made a superb start to the game, opening the scoring from the first corner. Champion had gotten away from his marker and glanced a delicate header past James Belshaw, at the front post.

Wood controlled the possession stats following the goal, but were struggling to get around the Harrogate defence. Keiran Murtagh twisted and turned on the edge of the box, but could only fizzle a shot across the face of goal.

A free-kick from the central midfielder was cleared by Harrogate, before Femi Ilesanmi recycled it with a low driven cross, which Callum Howe cleared.

A succession of passes were put together by the visitors around the halfway line before Ilesanmi drove past Warren Burrell on the left-wing, only to be denied once again by Howe.

Harrogate enjoyed their first real chance through the subsequent counter attack. Liam Agnew fed Jack Muldoon who got around the right of the Wood defence and flashed an effort into the side netting.

The home side were growing into the game, following a slow start. Howe headed a free-kick from Joe Leesley back into the box, but Burrell lashed his strike over the crossbar.

Looking to regain some control in the game, Murtagh found Ralston Gabriel in the box with a slipped through ball. The forward attempted to hit it first time, on the turn, but Howe blocked.

Ilesanmi and Burrell battled down the right win, with the latter winning a corner for the home side. The subsequent corner from Muldoon was met by the towering head of Howe, but Huddart reacted quickly to tip it over the bar.

With the game heading for half-time, Liam Kitching misread a ball over the top and headed it backwards towards goal. The full-back recovered well though and managed to nick it clear of Gabriel, who was waiting to pounce.

The Wood started the second half in similarly positive fashion. Justin Shaibu swept the ball past two defenders and into the box, but thundered a shot over the crossbar, via a deflection.

Attacking with an intent, Gabriel fed Danny Woodards out wide, who swept a teasing ball across the face of goal, that was narrowly in-front of Shaibu’s stretching left boot.

Wood were throwing everything in front of any chance that Harrogate got, with determined defending. A free-kick from deep caused carnage in the area and several stabbed at efforts, each of which were blocked by the Wood.

The ball was recycled by the hosts and Kitching smashed an effort towards the bottom left corner, which Huddart somehow kept out.

With less than 10 minutes remaining, Muldoon broke away down the right wing and swung a perfectly waited cross towards the head of Mark Beck, but Champion was back to make a vital header and divert the cross.

Still searching for an equaliser, Harrogate Town substitute Aaron Williams twisted an effort at Huddart, but the Wood stopper was down quickly to make the save.

There would be another scare with just a minute remaining, as another goal-line scramble ensued in the box, but somehow the visiting defence managed to scrap the ball clear.

With the game heading towards it’s end, Bradley Ash was released through on goal, after a deflection had prevented him from being offside. The forward looked to round the ‘keeper who had closed him down quickly, but Belshaw got a foot on the ball and nicked it away from Ash. The striker recovered the ball, but could only fire wide from a very tight angle

The Wood: Huddart, Woodards (Kanu 86’), Ilesanmi, Ricketts © (Parry 91′), Stephens, Shakes, Champion, Gabriel, Murtagh, Fyfield, Shaibu (Ash 70’)

Subs not used: Legg, Cooper

Harrogate Town: Belshaw, Falkingham ©, Howe, Burrell, Thomson (Beck 67’), Leesley, Agnew, Langmead, Muldoon (Williams 85’), Kitching, Woods (Thewlis 59’)

Subs not used: Fallowfield, Cracknell

Goals: Champion 9’

Att: 1216


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