As Boston United’s defeated and downhearted Pilgrims walk out of Grange Lane this evening they can take some solace from the fact that they won’t be having to return again this season.
Dennis Greene’s side must be sick of the place after yet another frustrating afternoon north of the Humber saw their five-game unbeaten run brought to an abrupt halt with qa 4-3 reverse.
Twice United led through goals from Grant Roberts and Carl Piergianni, but after missed chances and sloppy defending saw them trailing 4-2, Kyle Dixon’s late goal gave them some hope.
But it wasn’t to be as the hosts defended stoically.
Boston have now failed to record a victory over Ferriby in their past five meetings, their last success at Grange Lane being a 2-0 win back in March 2009.
Piergianni was offered a golden opportunity to give the away side an early lead when he rose unmarked to meet Zak Mills’ long throw, but the defender - who has scored in all three of his previous appearances - could only watch as his header flew wide of the mark.
Early pressure paid off for Boston when Grant Roberts fired home a 13th-minute opener.
The midfielder, who has previously described himself as a ‘one goal a season’ player made it two in four games with a deflected left-footed strike from the edge of the Ferriby penalty area after the Villagers failed to sufficiently clear another Mills throw.
But the scores were level just before the half-hour mark as Liam King beat Henrich Ravas to Curtis Bateson’s through ball and prodded beyond the onrushing keeper.
With the scores level once more, Boston pushed on looking to regain their lead.
Dayle Southwell saw a half-chance blocked while Ryan Robbins could only watch the ball trickle wide after he had charged down Adam Nicklin’s attempted clearance.
It was the hosts, whoever, who finished the half on top.
Ravas used his legs to deny Danny Clarke’s tight-angled drive while the Slovakian stopper was beaten to the ball by Tom Denton, only for Mills to save his blushes and head the ball off the goalline.
Within 10 minutes of the re-start both sides had found the net.
Piergianni made it four goals in as many games in the 54th minute as he rose to meet Mills’ throw in at the back post, his header carrying enough pace to power through the fingertips of Nicklin.
But less than 60 seconds later the hosts were level again as Boston switched off and King was gifted enough space to slot home from close range.
Undeterred, Boston pushed on again and after Dylan McEvoy’s low drive was spilled by Nicklin, the Villagers somehow scrambled clear.
However, Nicklin was left injured in the scrap and had to be replaced by Tom Nicholson.
The reserve keeper was given a simple introduction to the game as he collected Jordan Richards’ scuffed volley while, after Mark Jones had shrugged off the challenge of Mark Gray, he didn’t even have to make a save as the strike was smashed high over the bar.
It was a chance which was to come back to haunt the Pilgrims.
Ferriby took the lead for the first time in the 73rd minute as Danny Clarke was afforded space down the right wing and delivered a cross which Denton headed into the back of the net.
King had the chance to grab his hat-trick as he loomed down on goal but Ravas was again in the right place to make the save.
But Ferriby edged 4-2 in front as Mark Gray forced home from close range following an inswinging corner in the 79th minute.
Three minutes later and the Pilgrims were given hope when Kyle Dixon smashed a loose ball high into the Villagers’ net after the hosts had failed to deal with Nicky Walker’s cross.
But five minutes of added time, of constant Pilgrims pressure and of Mills’ long deliveries from the byline were dealt with well by the Villagers and United’s run came to an end.
UNITED: Ravas, Marrs, Mills, Piergianni, McEvoy, Garner (Walker 66), Richards, Roberts, M Jones (Dixon 75), Southwell, Robbins (Simmons HT); Subs (not used): Sarpong, Dixon, Johnson.
FERRIBY: Nicklin (Nicholson 60), Middleton, Wilde, King, Palmer, Gray, Clarke, Fry, Denton, Emerton (Bruce 90), Bateson (Kendall 86); Subs (not used): Bolder, Topliss.
Ref: Glen Hart.