Garstang pay the penalty

Geoff Wilson (centre, with armband) concedes the early penalty
Geoff Wilson (centre, with armband) concedes the early penalty

Stoneclough 2, Garstang 1

GARSTANG manager Stu Darley introduced two new signings for this six pointer at Stoneclough, with Thomas coming in at left back and Morris taking up a place on the bench.

Garstang made the worst possible start when after only seven minutes Callow out manoeuvred Ross out on the by-line before crossing, only for Wilson’s outstretched arm to give away a penalty for which striker Fisher gratefully accepted.

McDonough had to be at his best to tip a shot from Morrison round the post then a free kick from Fisher just cleared the crossbar.

Garstang were conceding too many free kicks on and around the penalty box bringing pressure on themselves but as an attacking force were making very little impression on the Stoneclough defence apart from a Pickles free kick that fizzed across the face of the goal and a Ross (Delap-like) throw into the box that was blazed over the bar by Andrews.

Woodruff came to Garstang’s rescue blocking a dangerous looking cross by Callow before Stoneclough deservedly doubled their lead on 29 minutes when Banasco was allowed to make progress along the by-line before setting up Callow for an easy tap in.

Garstang almost pulled one back before the break but Wood wasn’t quick enough to seize on a whipped in cross by Andrews.

Wilson prevented Garstang going further behind immediately after the interval blocking a near post effort by Hill.

Most of the second half was forgettable up until the last 10 minutes.

The introduction of Morris for Wood had somewhat energised the lacklustre Garstang team, the substitute was the instigator of the Garstang goal when he wrestled the ball from Scott by the corner flag before crossing to the near post, Wilson turned the ball towards goal, the ball squirmed across the goal line for Adam Roskell to claim the final touch.

Unfortunately the revival came too late, despite Morris hitting the post in a last ditch effort before the final whistle, one of very few chances created by an under par Garstang team in what was a very important fixture.

GARSTANG: McDonough. P.Roskell (rep. Matticheccia 75 mins.) Thomas, Woodruff, G.Wilson, Bullock, Ross, A. Roskell, Wood (rep. Morris 62.mins) Andrews, Pickles UNUSED SUBS: Ireland, Curwen (G.K.)

* This Saturday, March 5, Garstang are at home to Poulton Town in another crucial game. Poulton sit immediately above Garstang in 13th place in the table, just one point ahead ahving played a game more. Kick off is 3pm.