Match Report: Kidsgrove Athletic 2-1 Workington AFC (AET)
By Rob Glover
Grove edge past Workington in extra-time to set up eye catching trip to Hartlepool United
Kidsgrove Athletic edged past Workington to book their place in the fourth qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup, setting up a mouth watering tie with Hartlepool United thanks to a Rumenio winner in extra-time.
Both sides began the clash in bullish fashion, with Grove carving out the first chance as Lee Williamson's inswinging corner was met by Chris Budrys who saw his second minute close range effort blocked superbly.
Nine minutes later the hands of Dom Kurasik were tested as the Grove shot stopper got down well to his left to save Conor Tinnion's sweeping free-kick.
The visitors continued to pile on the pressure and forced Kurasik into action again minutes later as Bradley Hubbold's snaking strike from distance crept just wide of the post.
Workington fans thought their side had taken the lead in the 18th minute after Tinnion had the ball in the back of the net after a header was flicked on by the ever-present Jason Walker, only for the goal to be ruled offside.
The aerial threat of Walker was again evident as the striker knocked it on to Tinnion who saw his dipping volley fly just shy of the top corner, just minutes after his disallowed effort.
Budrys made a nuisance of himself throughout the early exchanges and snuck in behind the Workington back line, stabbing his 27th minute strike towards Aaron Taylor who gathered gratefully.
Grove supporters claims for a penalty in the 33rd minute were waved away by the referee after Blues frontman Budrys was manhandled in the area by centre-back Daniel Wordsworth, who had his blushes spared.
After a first half full of chances, Grove went in search of the elusive opener and Rumenio raced through in the 49th minute after the portuegese man capitalised on a long ball over the top however the winger failed to convert his tame effort with just Taylor to beat.
Workington striker Samuel Joel was next to go close after 55 minutes as he turned his man cleverly before firing agonisingly wide of Kurasik's top corner from 18 yards.
It was Joel who eventually broke the deadlock for the visitors on the hour mark as the Workington man lept highest following a left-footed Tinnion corner to power his header past Kurasik much to the delight of the travelling support.
Grove didn't have to wait long for their equaliser though as defender Lewis Bergin spotted Workington keeper Taylor off his line, trying his luck from 45-yards and reeping the rewards as a backtracking Taylor failed to prevent the Grove man levelling the tie with 22 minutes to play.
Buoyed by Bergin's audacious finish, Grove went in search of a second and just minutes later Budrys connected with an Anthony Malbon cross only to see his shot deflected behind by Niall Cowperthwaite.
Workington thought they had won it at the death as Tinnion struck the post one minute into stoppage time, with Kyle Diskin clearing for Grove with Joel breathing down his neck on the follow up.
With 90 minutes proving not enough to separate the two sides, the tie headed to extra-time and it didn't take Grove long to threaten as Budrys met a 93rd minute Rumenio cross only for his resulting header to lack conviction.
Two minutes later and Joel was causing problems for the Grove defence once more as his teasing strike from edge of the box soared just over the crossbar with Kurasik left watching.
The home side's diligence paid dividends in the 100th minute as Malbon played through Rumenio who showed a turn of pace before slotting home under a stranded Taylor to give Grove the advantage.
Rumenio had the chance to add to his tally and put the game to bed in the 112th minute as he raced towards Taylor however the midfielder couldn't steer his shot past the oncoming keeper.
Grove dug deep to stave off late pressure from Workington, with Kieran Maguire firing over for the Cumbria outfit. Joel almost salvaged it for the Reds but his 118th minute shot was deflected wide.