Robins through to next round after Histon shoot-out win

Ely City 1 Histon 1 (Ely win 4-3 on penalties)

ELY City’s defence of the Cambridgeshire Invitation Cup got off to a winning start on Tuesday night as they overcame Histon in a nail-biting penalty shoot-out.

Histon pulled level through Toby Cleaver after the Robins had taken a first-half lead courtesy of midfielder Josh Bridgeman’s goal, sending the tie to extra time and subsequently penalties.

Charlie Day missed for Histon after Richard Chadwick had put the hosts 4-3 up and a save from Lee Pacey ensured Alan Alsop’s side progressed to the next round of the cup.

Facing a young Histon team studded with first team players, Ely showed no fear early on and were rewarded for their endeavour after 18 minutes when Bridgeman finished from close range after the visitors failed to clear their lines.

Darren Coe and Nick Impey had excellent chances to extend the Robins’ advantage but spurned them before Histon, who enjoyed some excellent chances of their own, pulled level on the hour as Cleaver nodded home.

The sides traded blows in the latter stages but a combination of errant finishing and good goalkeeping meant the tie went the distance.

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Ely’s cup heroics came just three days after they came from behind to take a 4-2 win over plucky Clacton.

Despite controlling the game for long periods, the Robins found themselves 2-1 down midway through the second half but rallied in the final 20 minutes, scoring three goals and sealing their fifth victory in seven matches.

Goals for City came from Darren Coe, Nic Impey and a late brace from substitute Richard Chadwick.

The only sour note of the afternoon came in the last 10 minutes as Sam Parkinson received a straight red card for a lunging tackle.

The win moves them up into 13th place in the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division, albeit having played fewer games than most of the teams above them.