Taunton kept the pressure on leaders Weymouth with a hard earned win in the North London sunshine.
The home side made a bright start – a Charlie smith free kick was cleared for a corner and Connor Calcutt shot wide but it was Taunton who opened the scoring after six minutes. Top scorer Andrew Neal latched on to a Shane White through ball and turned the ball into the net.
Two minutes later the lead could have been doubled from a Ryan Brett free kick but Ed Palmer’s header went over.
After 20 minutes Neal had another saved by home keeper Chris Grace but Hendon were not to be outdone and skipper Lee Chappell forced a good save from Taunton keeper Lloyd Irish just two minutes later.
Hendon equalized after 26 minutes courtesy of a solo effort from Shaquille Hippolyte-Patrick but they were only level for a minute as Neal restored Taunton’s lead with a solo effort of his own.
After a drinks break play carried on and Calcutt had another shot wide after 37 minutes. Taunton could have extended the lead when White headed towards goal from Brett’s free kick but Chappell headed the ball off the line to ensure Taunton only led by the odd goal at the break.
Three minutes into the second half Taunton had another chance but Neal’s shot was blocked for a corner.
Hendon had a good opportunity after 55 minutes but Junior Osborne’s shot was also blocked for a corner.
Neal missed another opportunity to score a hat trick after 71 minutes from Dan Sullivan’s through ball but his shot went wide but he had another chance two minutes from time after being fouled by Osborne and he made no mistake from the penalty spot.
Hendon pulled a goal back in injury time when a shot by substitute Ogo Obi went in off the post but it was Taunton’s day and with other results going their way leaders Weymouth are only three points clear with two games remaining.
Match: Hendon v Taunton Town
Date: April 20, 2019
Competition: Evo Stik League | Southern Premier
Venue: Silver Jubilee Park
Kick Off: 3.00pm
Hendon: Chris Grace, James Hammond (Jacob Gardiner-Smith 87), Lee Chappell (captain), Luke Tingey, Junior Osborne, Rosario Jonas, Ryan Hope, Bayley Brown, Connor Calcutt (Lewis Toomey 74), Shaquille Hippolyte-Patrick, Charlie Smith (Ogo Obi 59). Subs not used – JJ Da cruz, Andrew McCorkell.
Taunton: Lloyd Irish, Pierce Mitchell, Lewis Hall, Shane White (captain), Ed Palmer, Matt Buse, Josh Nelmes, Ryan Brett (Matt Wright 65), Keith Emmerson, Dan Sullivan (Craig Veal 81), Andrew Neal (Noah Coppin 90+1). Subs not used – Luke Manley, Chandler Hallett.
Referee: Paul Johnson (Walton on Thames)
Referee’s Assistant 1: Martyn Mitchell (High Wycombe)
Referee’s Assistant 2: Michael Hayden (Epsom)