TWO second half goals saw Grays Ath maintain their unbeaten run in the league as they beat Brentwood Town 2-1.
Grays took a little time to deal with the long grass and it certainly slowed down Joao Carlos and David Cowley.
Grays had a glorious chance to go in front when a mis-placed header left Joe Sweeney with just the keeper to beat but the out of form striker lamely shot at the Brentwood keeper.
The first corner of the game was forced after a neat sidestep from Louis Dennis but the corner saw a off target header from Grant Cooper.
Grays had control of the game. David Cowley was working hard illustrated as he chased back forty yards to stop an attack.
The half got bogged down in unforced errors although Andy Hall had very little to do.
But there was still a worrying sign of a lack of urgency at times in midfield when Brentwood attacked and five Grays players didn’t track back.
Indeed the game gave fans to appreciate some of the solid defending Grays players such as Craig Pope and Lee Flynn do.
However, that was all undone in the 43rd minute when Junior Baker clattered into for a stonewall penalty. Ryan Doyle sent Andy Hall the wrong way to open up the scoring.
Grays came out eight minutes early for the second half. Clearly words were spoken.
The second half began with Grays dominating. The keeper saved a point blank header from Grant Cooper.
In the 51st minute, Grays got back in the game. Louis Dennis weaved his magic in the area shot low and hard. The keeper failed to keep hold and a very relieved Joe Sweeney tapped in.
Joao Carlos was running rampant on the left but on the other flank,two dreadful mis-placed passes by David Cowley but his own team under pressure.
Grant Cooper came off in the 58th minute with a shoulder injury.
Another Carlos strike saw the keeper spill the ball again. Grays took the lead in the 61st minute when once again Joao Carlos danced round the defender stroked the ball across the dead ball line for Louis Dennis to fire home from close range.
Grays took control of the game and Brentwood had very little response. Free kicks were easily fielded away.
Louis Dennis produced another great run in the 80th minute but the shop was tame. Danny Bunce came on to shore up the midfield.
But the Grays radar was still off as they seemed to let Brentwood back in the game. Brad Thomas produced a fine block tackle but it was followed by another mistake leading to a free kick. Luckily, the high floated ball was bravely caught by Andy Hall.
Brentwood’s day was complete when Andy Tomlinson was sent off. The club may well be in trouble as fans and officals abused the referee. In fact the FA assessor was also threatened by a spectator who, ironically, swore profusely about standards whilst holding his daughter!
Grays saw out the rest of the match to maintain their fine unbeaten run in the league.
Grays Ath: A Hall, C Pope, G Cooper (B Thomas 57), J Baker, L Flynn, (D Cowley 77) J Fontaine, H Agombar, K Beaney (D Bunce 80), J Carlos, L Dennis, J Sweeney
Subs Not used: J Small, E Worrell, A Aksoy