Potters Bar Town 0 - 2 GAFC
Grays rose to the top of the league table with a solid 2-0 win away to Potters Bar Town on Tuesday evening.
With the team and management aware they had made a slow start to the last couple of the games, the players ensured this was not the case at Potters Bar.
Inside the first minute, Joao Carlos found space on the edge of the Potters Bar area to fire a snap shot towards goal, but the ball went well wide of the left hand post.
On 5 minutes, a free kick on the edge of the area was heading on target until the ball flicked off a defender and away for a corner. This was played deep into the area and a goal mouth scramble ensued before the ball was eventually cleared.
Grays early dominance was rewarded in the 8th minute as Carlos collected the ball on the right wing and attacked to the edge of the area. His perfectly weighted pass between defenders met the run of Jack West who fired right footed low into the far corner to give the away side the lead.
Just two minutes later the lead was almost doubled as Joe Sweeney won the ball thirty yards from goal, cut inside a defender and fired towards goal, however, the ball went just wide of the left hand post.
Grays did double their lead shortly after as Jack West ran at goal before being hacked down just outside the area, slightly to the right of centre. The first free kick was played back to Lee Flynn but the referee stopped play to book Ashley Barker for encroachment.
After waiting for the wall to be realigned and everyone to retake their positions, Harry Agombar calmly stepped up and curled the free kick into the top right hand corner of the net, leaving Potters Bar keeper, Ed Thompson, rooted to the spot.
In the 28th minute, Joe Sweeney had to be substituted for Danny Bunce following a robust challenge, just one of many, by Danny Johnson which left Sweeney with a badly bruised ankle.
With the game approaching half time, Grays had to withstand some later Potters Bar pressure.
In the 44th minute, Anton Agdomar cut inside from the left wing and curled a right footed shot towards goal. The ball looked destined for the far corner until George Kamurasi dived full length to push the ball round the post.
With only seconds of injury time remaining, Kamurasi was again called into action as James Gershfield found space on the edge of the Grays area to fire a shot towards to top left hand corner of the net. Kamurasi ensured Grays maintained their two goal cushion into the break with another diving save to push the ball over the bar.
The second half started at a much more pedestrian pace than the first, with the first chance of the half not coming until the 53rd minute.
Grays worked the ball well around the edge of the area to create space which Agombar arrived into about twelve yards from goal. He carefully placed shot looked to be heading for the bottom right hand corner, but went agonisingly past the post for a goal kick.
Agombar had another chance to effectively end the game as a contest just three minutes later as more good build up play between West and Agombar allowed him space in the area. This time the shot was on target but Thompson was on hand to make a save low to his left.
Potters Bar responded by breaking quickly down the right wing and winning a corner. This was swung into the centre of the area to find Wesley Beckles unmarked, but his header went harmlessly over the bar.
Grays had a further chance to extend their lead in the 68th minute as Agombar played a through ball to Carlos. As he moved into the area, he cut inside a defender and fired toward goal but Thompson was again out well to keep the score at 2-0.
Carlos again came close on 75 minutes as his shot from the corner of the area was heading for the bottom right hand corner until Thompson got down well to push the ball round the post for a corner.
Potters Bar had two late chances. A header from a cross was straight at Kamurasi who reacted well to hold onto the ball. Shortly after, a show from the edge of the area was parried upwards by Kamurasi and then caught to ensure another clean sheet for the ever improving keeper.
Grays made two late substitutions, replaced Lee Flynn and Jack West with Luke Marshall and Tyrone Scarlett.
Grays saw out injury time without any further threat to their goal to move to the top of the table and ensure another superb away win to add to the collection of recent weeks at Cheshunt and Tilbury.
Grays next game is on Saturday as they Travel to Brighton to face Whitehawk in the FA Trophy before another cup game on Tuesday evening as they host East Thurrock United at Rush Green in the Essex Senior Cup.
Grays Athletic: George Kamurasi, Craig Pope, Lee Flynn (Luke Marshall 79), Junior Baker, Ryan Kirby, Harry Agombar, Kenny Beaney, Leon Lalite, Joao Carlos, Joe Sweeney (Danny Bunce 28), Jack West (Tyrone Scarlett 90)
Unused Subs: Grant Cooper, Joe Nightingill