Boston United 0 Stockport County 0: Penalty save denies the Pilgrims a top-three spot

Marc Newsham.
Marc Newsham.

You can look back on this game as an opportunity missed.

Not just because three points would have seen the Pilgrims move up to third in the Skrill North.

But also with 10 minutes left in the first half Boston’s hotshot Marc Newsham saw a penalty saved.

In the end, Boston United and Stockport County had to settle for a point each, arguably a fair result.

The first half offered very few clear-cut opportunities for either side on the boggy turf.

Stockport dominated the midfield battle and, in Adriano Moke, they had a leggy, powerful midfielder who looked like he could be the one to change the game.

But when he got the better of the feisty Rene Steer his whipped crosses weren’t getting the better of stand-in stopper Sam Vince, called up to replace the injured Lewis King.

In fact, Nicky Platt’s rushed and sliced effort was County’s best chance of the opening 45 minutes.

At the other end, United were gifted a great chance to open the scoring in the 35th minute when Ricky Miller was upended in the box by Jordan Fagbola.

But Marc Newsham’s spot kick and Kyle Dixon’s follow-up were both expertly saved by Ian Ormson.

Also for United, Miller’s effort from distance and Newsham’s close-ranger were as good as it got.

After the interval a timely challenge from Fagbola denied Miller a simple tap-in, while the Pilgrims striker also smashed an effort against the County upright from an acute angle.

As County surged forward, Liam Agnew’s stretched leg denied Iain Howard a certain goal.

Phil Jevons and Kristian Dennis both tried their luck from distance, Jevons seeing his effort saved by Vince and Dennis’ strike fizzing wide.

It was then Boton’s turn to push on and from consecutive corners they came within a whisker of scoring.

Newsham’s close-range effort was denied by Ormson, while Miller’s header hit the post.

Jevons almost opened the scoring when his low strike beat Vince but rebounded off the post.

And in time added on Newsham was handed another strike at goal - but once again a superb stop from Ormson kept parity.

One match summed up in the game’s final chance.

UNITED: Vince, Marrs, Steer, Marshall (Ross 86), Garner, Piergianni, Semple (McGhee 66), Dixon, Miller, Newsham, Agnew (Galinski 86); Subs (not used): Fairclough, King.

COUNTY: Ormson, Jacobs, Duxbury, Churchman, Fagbola, Lees, Moke (Dickinson 76), Platt, Dennis, Jevons, Howard; Subs (not used): Lofthouse, O’Halloran, Washburn.

Ref: Anthony Tankard.

Att: 917.