Ellor Double Secures United Win
A brace from Steve Ellor and one from Jack Whittaker proved enough to give United the points at Kiveton Park.
United raced into a 3-0 half time lead but were left hanging on in a second period of missed Reds chances, a fight back from the hosts and some bizarre decisions from the referee.
United played some nice passing football in the early stages though it was the hosts who had the first efforts at goal, a free kick into the penalty area was headed towards the target by Stewart and Garforth got a shot away though neither effort troubled Reds keeper Priestley. Neat passing triangles from United saw them keep most of the possession and they took the lead on 13 minutes when Tommy Harrison sprayed a defence splitting pass out to Jack Whittaker out on the right, as the ball travelled though the air Whittaker ran inside the full back and with his first touch he played the ball past the keeper who came rushing out to cover and Whittaker was able to prod the ball into an empty net to give the Reds the lead. Whittaker was proving a handful down the right side and a surging run from the United man saw him put in a cross which was just a little too high for the incoming Paul Hemmingway. A second goal for United was not long in coming, Harrison who was putting in a good display in midfield intercepted the ball in midfield, played it out on the left to Hemmingway and he was alert enough to spot Steve Ellor in acres of space and passed the ball to the United front man, Ellors first touch was heavy and keeper Parker blocked with his feet but the ball fell kindly for Ellor and like Whittaker before him he was able to put the ball into an empty net.
A slip by Ryan Scott when he allowed the ball to slip under his foot allowed Perrie to get clear but Priestley was equal to his shot and kept the hosts at bay. Further chances fell to both sides as Ellor, Hemmingway and Whittaker all combined to set up shots at goal and the home strikers Garforth & Perrie also had shots but were unable to open their teams account. On 39 minutes United went into a 3-0 lead, Martin Lawton gained possession near his own penalty area strode forward a couple of paces before releasing a pass to Steve Ellor, the United man was inside his own half but surged forward and was too quick for the home defenders before firing the ball into goal for his second of the afternoon. As half time approached a corner for the home team was met by Jamie Harrison who rose highest but his header went over the bar. Half time Kiveton Park 0-3 United
The second period saw United still the stronger of the 2 sides, a Ben Redfern pass was threaded through for Hemmingway to race on to but the onrushing keeper got there in time. On 56 minutes United should have had a penalty and the game saw the first bizarre decision from the referee. Ellor was hauled down by defender Harrison, the referee gave no penalty and as both players stood nose to nose to dispute the incident Harrison punched Ellor causing the United man to fall heavily to the ground, if the initial incident wasn't a penalty then surely this should have seen a spot kick given and a red card issued to Harrison however to everyone's amazement the referee cautioned both players and gave a free kick to the home side. Sixty seconds later the referee was gain the subject of wonder from the Reds, during a midfield challenge Mick Russon fell to the ground upon which he was clearly kicked by home skipper Warner however yet again the referee saw fit to caution both players.
United didn't let these injustices upset them and continued to set the pace, Tony Mullen moved out from defence and played a through ball to Ellor, he pulled it back into a central position from out wide on the right, slightly behind the incoming Hemmingway but his shot had no power and the keeper comfortably gathered the ball. After the earlier incidents Kiveton Park seemed to be losing their discipline as firstly Jack Whittaker was tripped when in full flow with the ball and Tom Harrison was victim to a couple of heavy challenges. The home side then pulled one back on 66 minutes, Gravelle crossed the ball into the penalty area, it was chested down by Garforth into the path of Perrie who calmly curled the ball into the top left corner of the goal. This galvanised the home side a little and they started to create a little more, a corner from the right was met on the volley by Jamie Harrison but he saw his effort clear the bar and Priestley saved low down from Perrie. United were also creating chances of their own, Whittaker, Harrison and Russon all had efforts at goal before United's best chance to increase their lead came and went, Jack Whittaker raced towards goal with the home side appealing for offside, as he closed in on goal with only the goal keeper to beat he tried a square pass to the supporting Ellor which was too strong and the ball went wide and the home defence were able to get back and clear.
With 7 minutes to go the home side got a second when sub Ainsley Finney, with his first action foolishly tripped a home player and Gribben scored from the spot to reduce the arrears to 3-2. Trying to make amends Finney got a couple of shots in at goal but perhaps he may have been trying too hard as team mates were in better positions waiting for a pass, the final action almost saw the home side get an equaliser they didn't deserve when home sub Dean Ebbs got a shot in from the left which just went past the far post however United then saw out the final few minutes to secure the 3 points.