A big crowd of 1,266 turned out at Vauxhall Road on New Year’s Day to watch Hemel Town finally end the run of 2-2 draws in their local derby against St Albans.
The home side almost went in front after just three minutes when Scott Shulton curled a shot in from the edge of the box that City keeper Dean Snedker did well to push away for a corner.
There was a goalmouth scramble from the corner with three Tudors players getting a shot in but somehow each one was blocked and Snedker eventually grabbed the loose ball.
If Hemel thought they were going to have it all their own way they were given a sharp reminder of City’s capabilities after eight minutes when Rhys Murrell-Williamson raced down the right and fired in a shot that crashed against Laurie Walker’s post and away.
Defence was soon turned into attack as Alex Osborn latched onto the loose ball, raced up field and brought another fine save out of Snedker in City’s goal.
Things settled after this frenetic start and City grabbed a foothold in the game, controlling the possession without really creating too much.
On 32 minutes, The Tudors took the lead, somewhat against the run of play when they broke away and forced a corner. The ball wasn’t really cleared and Matt Spring picked out David Moyo at the far post. The angle looked too tight for a shot but Moyo managed to cut it back across the face of the goal and it crept into the net via Snedker’s attempted block.
Moyo saw another effort from 20 yards just drift wide and that was pretty much it for the first-half, Hemel just about deserving their lead at the break.
The second period was still even with City probing and trying to be patient but Hemel always looking dangerous on the counter attack. Moyo made two breaks down the left within minutes of each other. Both times he pulled the ball back for December’s Player of the Month Shulton, who had his first effort blocked and skied the second into the St Albans fans behind the goal.
Hemel continued to threaten but City were still very much in the game and, as in previous matches, the Tudors fans started bracing themselves for the inevitable equaliser.
Joe Howe had a good opportunity to ease their fears when he raced onto a pass from Osborn just on the hour mark but he couldn’t keep his effort down.
Shortly after, the visitors had their best chance of the second half when Sam Merson’s shot was well-saved by Walker after a corner wasn’t cleared.
With just eight minutes left on the clock a cross from the right was met by the unmarked Moyo who rose and headed past Snedker into the corner to give the Tudors a two-goal cushion, Hemel fans at the bottom end of the ground thought the ball had looped over but it dropped just under the bar and the celebrations began.
After this, the home side saw the game out comfortably.
Hemel: Laurie Walker, Lloyd Doyley (captain) (James Kaloczi), Joe Howe, Matt Spring (Antonio German), Kyle Connolly, Ismail Yakubu, Alex Osborn, Scott Shulton, David Moyo, Will Hoskins (Jordan Parkes), Spencer McCall. Subs not used: Ebby Nelson-Addy and Danny Boness.