Dean Brennan’s Barnet side welcomed Eastleigh to The Hive for a fixture between 5th and 6th place. The two sides walked onto the pitch in front of the BT Sport cameras with the stadium buzzing for kick-off.
A strong start was made by both sides as each team battled it out in the middle of the pitch for possession. The Bees skipper, Dale Gorman, had the first chance of the game. His effort from just outside the box fizzed off his foot and just missed the left post.
While the Bees came close, Eastleigh had much of the upper hand for the opening stages.
Kabamba went close in the 14th minute. The ball was crossed in from left and was met by our No.9 on the penalty spot. He was unable to get clear contact and hit the ball over the bar without troubling the keeper.
After Dean Brennan made a small tactical change, Barnet started to take a grip of the game. The Bees’ pressure was almost rewarded. Shields held the ball up really well on the penalty spot and laid it off to Gorman who hit it first time. His attempt narrowly missed the target, but the pendulum was slowly starting to swing in favour of Barnet.
The Barnet attack finally clicked in the 28th minute. Dale Gorman whipped in a corner, and it was met by Shields at the front post. Shields flicked it on, and the ball was turned in by Pritchard at the back post to give The Bees the lead.
Barnet were successful once again only nine minutes later. Sean Shields with an incredible solo run. He collected the ball on the left wing and took on the right back. After beating his defender, he then took on the rest of the defence, dummied the ball and smashed it past a helpless keeper. Barnet led at the break 2-0.
After the restart, Eastleigh dictated much of the play. They had the first chance of the half as a corner was whipped in and landed at the feet of an attacker on the edge of the box. Fortunately for Barnet, the attempt was sliced and went wide.
In the 55th minute, Rob Hall stepped up with one of the goals of the season. The ball was whipped in from the left and was headed away by an Eastleigh defender. It fell to Hall, and he bicycle kicked it past the keeper. Incredible concentration and technique from Hall.
As the second half continued to unfold, Barnet were able to stifle much of the Eastleigh pressure. The best chance for Eastleigh came in the 77th minute from a free kick. The effort, from the right-hand side, whistled past the crossbar without troubling Walker.
Eastleigh finally got the better of the Barnet defence from a corner in the 83rd minute. The ball was headed in from a corner. The goal came too late for Eastleigh as Barnet saw out the result to go 2nd in the Vanarama National League.
Barnet XI: 1. Laurie Walker; 21. Ben Wynter; 27. Moussa Diarra; 6. Jerome Okimo; 23. Sam Beard; 8. Dale Gorman ©; 14. Harry Pritchard; 18. Connor Smith (78’ Marvin Armstrong); 7. Rob Hall (60’ Kian Flanagan); 9. Nicke Kabamba; 32. Sean Shields (89’ Michael Phillips).
Unused Subs: 12. James Callan; 2. Jordan Thomas.
Attendance 1974 (108 away)