Robins Brush Past Hapless Gladiators
Report Steve Lee
The Robins boosted their chances of a top ten finish with a comfortable win over a very out of sorts Matlock Town as they extended their run of successive clean sheets to five games.
Danny Johnson was down the bare bones without regular strikeforce of Aaron Burns and Matty Barlow, but despite being only able to name four substitutes including goalkeeper Terry Smith and assistant manager Billy McCartney, it was a job well done for the Robins.
Matlock had the first chance with an attempted lob from Joe Leeshley that Paul Phillips clawed away, whilst the Hurst Cross side went close when Thomas Moore got on the end of a corner from Matty Burke, but headed over the bar.
Chris Baguley was making the most of a rare start with a busy performance and he got on the end of a pass from Chris Amadi after a typical run from the winger, but his effort went wide as he cut inside.
Skipper Craig Robinson then produced an ambitious shot from 30-yards out, but Nick Buxton was on hand to deny what would have been a spectacular goal.
Moore posed a threat going forward all night and he shot over after he began a three man move and then hit the bar from a free kick after Matty Kosylo was cynically brought down some twenty yards out.
The Gladiators most impressive attacker in the first half, Lavelle White somehow contrived to miss from six yards out with just Phillips to beat, this after Phillips had comfortably saved from long range to deny Lee Featherstone.
Ashton ended the half with some flowing football, Amadi raced from half way, leaving defenders trailing in his wake and his cross was headed wide at the near post by the supporting Kosylo.
The second half was totally dominated by the Robins, an early effort saw Kyle Harrop shoot over after a pass from Dennis Sherriff.
Pressure finally told as the skilfull Kosylo jinked inside the area only for Laurence Gaughan to produce a clumsy challenge in front of the referee that gave the official an easy penalty call to make.
After three successive goal-less games, Moore coolly slotted the spot kick past Buxton to put Robins a goal to the good and a lead they never looked like surrendering.
Another Amadi run ended with Matty Burke firing wide and then a mazy run from Kosylo saw his shot deflected over at the expense of a corner.
The home side doubled their lead from Burke’s flag kick as Alex Frost headed home at the third time of asking for his first goal of the season.
Buxton produced a good save from Kosylo as Ashton threatened to run away with the game in the closing stages, but couldn’t add to their lead.
ASHTON Phillips, Harrop,Lambert, Moore, Robinson, Frost, Kosylo, Burke, Sherriff (Riley 73), Baguley (B Smith 83), Amadi. subs not used
T Smith, McCartney