BOSTON UNITED 5 LOWESTOFT TOWN 3: Pilgrims serve up a Christmas cracker

Rene Steer.
Rene Steer.

Boston United stretched their unbeaten Boxing Day record to six years following a 5-3 thriller against Lowestoft Town.

Since 2008’s defeat to Eastwood, the Pilgrims have beaten Stocksbridge and Eastwood, as well as drawing with Corby and Histon.

Now you can add this Christmas cracker to the collection, as the Pilgrims managed what they failed to do last season - earn a victory in December.

Dayle Southwell netted twice, with Rene Steer and Scott Garner chipping in with wonder goals and Greg Tempest adding a low drive.

Although United led from the 10th minute, they didn’t always have things their own way in a contest which showed both their cutting edge in attack and occasional frailties at the back.

Dennis Greene made two changes to the side which left Barrow on the back of that controversial 1-0 defeat on Saturday.

In came defender Zak Mills and striker Mark Jones as the Pilgrims boss reverted back to the side which went six matches unbeaten through November.

That meant Marc Newsham and Jamie McGhee dropped to the bench.

Lowestoft included former Pilgrims Adam Smith and Sam Gaughran in their starting XI.

United needed just 10 minutes to open the scoring.

Greg Tempest and Kyle Dixon were both playing the final matches of their loans from Notts County, and Tempest said his goodbye in style, smashing home a low strike through a packed penalty area.

Ten minutes later and Garner doubled the advantage with a sweetly-struck first-time effort outside of the penalty area which swerved away from the reach of Ashlee Jones before nestling into the net.

Jones was on hand to pull off a great stop moments later, however, as he pushed Kyle Dixon’s low drive round his post.

Lowestoft’s first effort fell to Jake Reed, but his weak header from a good position failed to trouble Joel Dixon between the Boston sticks.

The Trawler Boys deserved to feel aggrieved after not being awarded a penalty.

With Reed about to shoot from just inside the penalty area Liam Marrs put both hands on his back, with enough contact to send the forward tumbling to the floor.

However, referee Ian Dudley let play continue.

United stretched their lead to 3-0 with the goal of the game on 33 minutes.

Rene Steer can seemingly only deliver the spectacular, and his left footed 25-yard chip had Jones scrambling but beaten with 33 minutes on the clock.

With a third of the contest played the hosts looked home and dry.

But the 10 men of Town came from 3-0 down to draw at Solihull Moors in early December, and they pulled themselves back into the contest three minutes before the break through farcical circumstances.

A poor corner landed at the feet of Marrs, who took a heavy touch. As he looked to clear Dean Mason nipped in first and was tripped by the right back.

This time referee Dudley pointed to the spot and Jack Ainsley sent Joel Dixon the wrong way.

After the interval Jones twice slipped Dayle Southwell in for shooting opportunities, but on both occasions the Lowestoft keeper made vital blocks.

And in the 55th minute, Curtis Haynes-Brown pulled the away side back into the contest with a low 20-yarder.

Then the game went from crazy to bonkers as a further three goals arrived within an eight minute spell.

Southwell looked to be offside when he collected Garner’s header, but the Boston forward played to the whistle and grabbed his 14th of the season in exquisiute style, rounding Jones and slotting home from a tight angle.

Reed then tapped home Lowestoft’s third in the 66th-minute after United failed to clear a low cross.

But three minutes later Southwell grabbed his second of the day with a powerful finish on the turn.

UNITED: J. Dixon, Mills, Steer (McGhee 45), K. Dixon, Garner, Piergianni, Marrs, Tempest, Southwell, Jones, Felix (Marshall 74); Subs (not used): Marshall, Hollingsworth, Newsham, Price.

LOWESTOFT: Jones, Ainsley, Haynes-Brown, Okay (Fisk 69), Gleeson, Gaughran, Mason (Eagle 68), Jarvis, Reed, Bammant, Smith (Woods-Garness 76); Subs (not used): Zielonka, Jessup.

Ref: Ian Dudley.

Att: 1,219.