Platt 31; Denton 45; Johnson 84 (pen)
Bradley 22; Richards 48; Ironside 67
HARRIERS were made to do with a point on the opening day of the season as they and Alfreton Town played out an entertaining 3-3 draw.
It was a fairly restless game that swung from one end to another - Dan Bradley's screamer cancelled out by a Tom Platt header in the first half before Tom Denton put the home side in front. Goals from Kane Richards and Joe Ironside then restored the visitors' advantage only for a late Johnson penalty to ensure the hosts got themselves a share of the spoils.
Bradley's goal, midway through the half, was arguably the first serious, clear cut chance either side had fashioned - though through Tom Denton and Ashley Chambers respectively, both teams had seen sights of goal come and go with headed efforts. The opener, when it came, flew into the far corner as Bradley stuck audaciously on the half-volley from a throw in.
Just six minutes later Chambers almost followed suit - his dipping effort from a corner, delivered by Weeks, had the goalkeeper in a world of trouble, only for the ball to clatter the upright. Alfreton would take advantage of the let off, netting from their first corner of the day as Platt stole a march to flick a header beyond Hall.
Denton's header at the far post had sent Alfreton in at the break a goal up against the run of play, but sub Kane Richards soon made amends after the restart - netting just two minutes into his Harriers career by side-footing home Sam Austin's cross.
Five minutes later Johnson supplied Richards who curled narrowly off target when searching for quickfire second, Lane then sweeping just wide with a volley up at the other end.
On 67 minutes Ironside struck, turning on a sixpence inside the area with the ball at his feet before poking it home to the delight of the Harriers fans. Neil MacFarlane's men then assumed control of the game and almost made it 4-2 when Ironside nodded wide a Bradley cross.
Almost at the death, though, Alfreton ensured their efforts on the day got some reward; Wilde upended in the area by Daniels on 85 minutes, Johnson stepping up and hitting the penalty and finding the net - despite Hall getting a strong hand to it.
HARRIERS finally get their new season underway on Saturday as they journey to Alfreton Town.
Neil MacFarlane takes the hot seat for the very first time in a competitive game since since taking the managerial reigns earlier in the summer.
The boss has added the likes of Ashley Chambers, James Baxendale and Billy Daniels to his ranks to bolster what was already a sound base.
After a mixed and varied pre-season campaign which has yielded plenty of positives, it's down to the serious business of the National League North campaign.
It begins with a mightily tall order -- the team head to the Impact Arena to face an Alfreton Town side fancied to do very well this season.
Boss Billy Heath has recruited well, with a number of his new recruits having featured for him with great success at the likes of FC Halfax in recent seasons.
Of the test, MacFarlane commented: "We've watched them on numerous occasions and have loads of videos and reports.
"It's going to be a tough test, there's absolutely no doubt about that..." Neil MacFarlane
"It's going to be a tough test, there's absolutely no doubt about that and we're under no illusions - as all the games will be in this league.
"They have recruited a number of players this season and put together a new side, and I think they'll hope to challenge, which is something we hope to do as well.
"If we can do what we've been doing on the training ground and in the pre-season matches, and take that to Saturday, we can stamp our authority on the game."
MacFarlane has the relative luxury of having a fully fit squad to choose from for the game. Ed Wagner (quad) shook off a knock from the back end of last week to resume full training in advance of this weekend.
If selected, Wagner and James Baxendale would feature against their former club having played for Alfreton at the back end of last season - Richard Peniket and Martin Riley are among the former Harriers now turning out at the Impact.
Kick-off at Alfreton on Saturday is at 3:00pm
WATCH: All the pre-match build-up by clicking the Video tab above.
Harriers fans can purchase tickets on the day of the game
Dan Bradley pre-match
Ashley Chambers pre-match
Neil MacFarlane pre-match
Joe Ironside post-match
Neil MacFarlane post-match
Extended match highlights