BROMSGROVE Sporting moved to the summit of the Midland League Premier Division table with a 3-1 victory over county rivals Stourport Swifts.
Jason Cowley had given the Rouslers a 12th-minute lead before Matt Fulloway equalised eight minutes after the break.
Richard Gregory then struck twice – just like he did in the previous encounter at the Victoria Ground which ended by the same scoreline – as Paul Smith’s men now sit one point clear of second-placed Sporting Khalsa having played three games less.
Following their 3-1 victory over Wisbech Town in the last 32 of the FA Vase, Sporting boss Smith made four changes to the team with new signing Dan Preston, Jack Wilson, Liam Holt and Drew Canavan coming in for Josh Quaynor, Guy Clark, Sam Wills and Reece Hewitt.
And the returning Holt, who was ineligible for the Wisbech clash, forced Swifts keeper Dominic Richards into an early save at his near post inside the opening minute.
Fulloway then sent a free header over the bar from Ashley Parsons-Smith’s free-kick as the hosts began to get into their stride.
But they were halted in their tracks as the visitors grabbed the lead in spectacular style.
After Reece Francis gathered Parsons-Smith’s corner, he launched a long ball up to Cowley who skipped past his marker before lifting the ball over the onrushing Richards to complete a swift counter-attack.
But the goal only spurned Swifts into gear and they started to dominate proceedings.
Although it could have been 2-0 midway through the half if Gregory had managed to direct his acrobatic volley on target from Robbie Bunn’s corner.
And if it was not for the smart reflexes of Sporting keeper Reece Francis towards the end of the first period the hosts would have been level.
He first denied Nick MacPherson before getting down low enough in the fourth minute of stoppage time to get a hand on Joe Hanson’s low effort.
After the interval Swifts carried on with their high tempo and were rewarded with the equaliser in the 53rd minute when Parsons-Smith’s pinpoint corner was nodded home at the back post by an unmarked Fulloway.
But within two minutes the visitors were back in front.
After conceding a soft free-kick on the far side, the long ball made its way to Sean Brain whose miscued shot landed at the feet of Gregory who could not miss from a couple of yards out.
And moments later Cowley could have grabbed his second and Sporting’s third had it not been for a goal-line clearance after the striker had lobbed Richards again.
Richards then denied Brain from drilling in at the near post but with little over 15 minutes remaining the Swifts keeper was picking the ball out of his net again.
Sam Wills’ corner from the right-hand side made its way through to Gregory who curled a beautiful effort into the far corner to all-but secure the victory for Smith’s men.
Swifts continued to press with Parsons-Smith seeing a long-range free-kick well saved by Francis before the Sporting keeper denied Myles Newman from pulling a goal back five minutes from time.
Report courtesy of Craig Gibbons (Bromsgrove Standard)
Report from Phil Baker
On a cold and frosty evening at Walshes Meadow, Sporting needed penalties to get to the final of the Worcestershire Senior Urn but having dominated much of the second half against Stourport, they really should have won the match inside 90 minutes.
In contrast to last Saturday's game when Sporting made much us of the long ball up-field, this game was much more based on retaining possession and short, neat passing. However it was the home side who had the first decent chance on the 8th minute when Nick MacPherson's effort was blocked by Sporting 'keeper Reece Francis.
The Rouslers then had the majority of play but despite a few week efforts failed to get past a well-organised Swifts' back-line. Then somewhat against the run of play, Stourport took the lead on 29 minutes when MacPherson headed Dan Sweeney's corner goallwards when it was cleared but the linesman decided that it had gone over the line.
Having warmed up at half-time Sporting immediately pushed forward and got their rewards just two minutes after the re-start following a quick run down the right by John Pykett who pulled a sublimely accurate ball across from the by-line that found Sean Brain just a couple of yards out who had the easiest of tap-ins for the equaliser.
From then on Stourport had to soak up a lot of pressure as the away side pretty much kept them pinned back in their own half, though they did have their moments and might have had a penalty on the 67th minute when Aaron Roberts clattered MacPherson but referee Mr Tyler ruled there was no foul.
On the 85 minutes, it looked as if Drew Canavan had settled the match with a curving shot to the top left hand corner but Stourport 'keeper Dominic Richards produced a brilliant one-handed save to keep his side in the match. Then just two minutes later Stourport made a quick break up field; Ashley Parsons-Smith sent a long cross into the box where MacPherson got the better of Josh Quaynor and slid the ball into the net just wide of Francis.
Stourport's lead did not last long and with just a minute left on the clock, Robbie Bunn attempted as shot through a crowded penalty area that went though Paul Hurrell's legs and just wide of Richards' outstretched glove to even the match up.
With no more attempts and a couple of minutes added time played, the game went to penalties with Jack Wilson hitting the winner for Sporting as Myles Newman's effort hit he underside of the bar and bounced out.
Sporting will now play Lye Town in the final at Kidderminster Harrier's ground, Aggborough on Thursday 24th April.
Stourport: Dominic Richards, Joe Hanson, Harry Higginson, Joe Colley (Matt Fulloway 77 mins), Paul Hurrell, Ben Priest, Matt Hanson (Ashley Parsons-Smith 65 mins), Myles Newman, Nick MacPherson, Alex Perry (Adam Beardsmore 80 mins), Dan Sweeney.
Subs not used: Jim Hanson, Callum Grant.
Goals: Nick MacPherson (29 mins, 87 mins)
Yellows: Dan Sweeney (22 mins), Joe Colley (54 mins), Myles Newman (73 mins)
Sporting: Reece Francis, Aaron Roberts, Josh Quaynor, Drew Canavan, Craig Jones (Capt.), John Pykett, Liam Holt (Nathan Binner 82 mins), Robbie Bunn, Sean Brain, Wade Malley, Jack Wilson.
Subs not used: Dan Preston, Danny Morris, William Perks, John Farnsworth.
Goals: Sean Brain (47 mins), Robbie Bunn (89 mins)
Yellows: Jack Wilson (18 mins), Liam Holt (45+1 mins)
Stourport - Sporting
0 - 1 Josh Quaynor
1 - 1 Nick MacPherson
1 - 2 Wade Malley
2 - 2 Dan Sweeney
2 - 3 Sean Brain
3 - 3 Harry Higginson
3 - 4 Nathan Binner
4 - 4 Joe Hanson
4 - 5 Drew Canavan
5 - 5 Paul Hurrell
5 - 6 Jack Wilson
5 - 6 Myles Newman hit the bar
Referee: Mr P Tyler
Assistants: Mr M Fletcher, Mr M Daniel
Sporting Man of the Match: Robbie Bunn
Reporter: Phil Baker