The Ravens Seal Promotion With Superb Second Half Display
Coalville ran out 3-1 winners in the Play Off Final thanks to second half goals from Nat Watson, Callum Woodward and Luke Smithson.
Tommy Brookbanks named an unchanged starting 11 from the side that beat Basford United 5-0 in the Semi Final on Tuesday evening. Aaron Hooton was named amongst the substitutes in place of the injured Jake Woolley.
The opening 10 minutes of the game seemed to set the tone for the first half with neither side seeming able to settle down on the ball. Shaw Lane did have the better of the earlier chances, Lee Bennett found himself in space on the edge area but screwed his shot well wide. Shaw Lane were starting to take control and had another opportunity after 25 minutes, Lee Bennett's shot was blocked by Callum Woodward, the ball fell to Gavin Allott who could only scuff his shot wide under good pressure from Danny Jenno.
Coalville were struggling to get into the final third and on the very few occasions they did they were unable to create any real chances. Shaw Lane opened the scoring after 32 minutes, Gary Stoher played in Jono Wafula in behind Lee Torr on the right hand side, Wafula crossed the ball on the byline expertly to Lee Bennett who found himself unmarked 6 yards out to head home past Bowles to give Shaw Lane the lead.
Shaw Lane had a chance to double their lead 5 minutes before half time, Gavin Allott brought the ball down and laid into his strike partner Walshaw's path who stroked his shot just wide of the post.
HT: Shaw Lane 1-0 Coalville.
With Coalville struggling to have any impact on the game, Tommy Brookbanks decided to make a change at half time, Jared Holmes was replaced by Brad Munn which turned out to be an inspired substitution with Munn involved very much in everything Coalville did well in the 2nd half.
Coalville were starting to stamp their authority on the game early in the second half and looked a completely different side to the one in the first half. Oscar Radford's cleaance fell to Nat Watson on the edge of the box who hit a powerful shot first time which flew narrowly over Morgan's crossbar.
Shaw Lane were still a threat however and a goal-line clearance stopped the hosts from doubling their lead, Matt Thornhill's corner was met by Lee Bennett who hit his shot on the volley but Callum Woodward did brilliantly to clear the ball off the line to keep Coalville in the contest.
Coalville were level on 66 minutes, Nat Watson played the ball into Brad Munn who returned the ball back to Watson, Watson skipped past Rhys Menell and kept on running to the edge of the area before unleashing a shot into the bottom left corner past Tom Morgan in the Shaw Lane goal.
Coalville were now in the ascendancy and Nat Watson was again in the thick of the action, his powerful low strike was turned around the post by Morgan. Alex Troke was the next to come close, Luke Smithson precise cross from the right hand side was brought down by Troke, his shot forced a brilliant save from Morgan to turn the ball behind.
It was from the resulting corner that Coalville would take the lead, Nat Watson's corner was flicked on towards goal by Dean Freeman to Callum Woodward who headed home from close range.
Shaw Lane pushed men forward looking to find the equalisng goal which left them open to counter attacks from Coalville, Brad Munn broke away through on goal but he was denied by Morgan.
The Ravens did add a 3rd goal and it came through another counter attack, it was again Munn and Watson who were at the heart of the attack, Munn played a one two with Watson who slipped the ball back through to Munn, Munn then raced through on goal before calmly moving the ball onto Luke Smithson who finished excellently into the bottom corner to put the game beyond doubt.
Shaw Lane had a chance to reduce the deficit in the 93rd minute, Gavin Allott tried a low effort which Sean Bowles got down well to palm away and Liam Walshe cleared the rebound away. This turned out to be the last notable moment in the game as the final whistle was blown moments later to send the travelling support into joyous celebrations.
FT: Shaw Lane 1-3 Coalville.