Bithum’s 90th-minute headed goal cancelled Arua Hill SC plans of collecting maximum points as they were forced draw 2-2 at Barifa Play Ground in the Big League on Thursday.
Caeser Okhuti put Arua Hill SC ahead just two minutes into the game. Gaddafi saw Bamukyaye, Mulimi, Ngobi and Otim all fire blanks before Bamukyaye leveled matters from a penalty kick 25 minutes later.
The Leopards regained their lead in the 71st minute from Alfred Leku’s finish before the Soldiers Boys’ number seven put his side in level with a fine header in the 90th minute.
Hussein Mbalangu made four changes from the 1-0 win against Calvary during the weekend, and the returning Rashid Agau played a key role in giving Arua Hill life in the second half.
The Leopards found the net early on against a Gaddafi defense that supported in keeping a clean sheet away from their home during their clash with Paidha Black Angels.
Captain Okhuti headed home off Dan Birikwalira’s habitual throw in, before he paved way for Alfred Leku in the 19th minute due to injury.
The visitors were level in the 27th minute after referee pointed to the spot when Rashid Muhamed attempted to clear a danger ball but was unfortunate to see his hand having contact with the moving ball. Bamukyaye stepped in to execute the penalty as they balanced the scores.
Mbalangu introduced Gadafi Gadinho who disappointed not as he came in with enough ball supplies to the forwards. His presence activated the best in Rashid Agau, hence Agau was witnessed playing to his potential.
Agau came close to scoring twice between 50 to 51 minutes. He first shot at goal before he became unlucky when Leku accidentally blocked the ball which was destined to goal. Shortly, he pulled a serious trigger but his strike was stopped by Didi.
The centre referee Kasibante Julius gave marching orders to Arua Hill goalkeeping coach Ivan Ntambi and Gaddafi’s Frank Mulimi before Leku made things right with his 71st minute goal.
Hassan Zungu’s side had looked depleted after they got reduced to ten men but still managed to frustrate the hosts in the dying minute when Bithum headed home a cross from his teammate.
Despite the result Arua Hill SC maintains the top spot in Elgon Group with 12 points, and a superior goal difference than second place Kataka FC.
Arua Hill has now played six games, with no defeat recorded after winning thrice and drawing thrice.
They will now focus on Paidha Blacks Angels as the first round curtain prepares to drop down on 25th/04/2021
Arua Hill SC Starting Lineup: Anyama, Yakin, Dan, Kawooya, Muhamed, Ajobe, Baden, Muhumuza, Okhuti, Mugalu, Agau
Sub: Oringa, Simba, Atandu, Kawawa, Kakooza, Leku, Gadinho
Gaddafi FC Starting Lineup: Didi, Massa, Najib, Kasadha, Ochungu, Kyeyune, Ngobi, Otim, Bamukyaye, Mulimi, Gonahasa
Sub: Sseguya, Bajjampola, Sserwadda, Obele, Munguci, Waiswa, Bithum