Match Report: GNE 2 Kendal Town 1
Dale Johnson hit an 84th minute screamer to secure the points for The Hillmen in a tight affair at Surrey Street. The experienced striker controlled a long ball 20 yards out, spun and fired a low piledriver past Will Kitchen to give the Hillmen the win.
The Hillmen had started brightly. Courtney Meppen-Walter’s low drive hit the side netting, Callum Chippendale’s curling free kick was pushed wide by the diving keeper at his near post and Matthew Russell’s shot from the edge was on target, but saved comfortably.
Kendal created a couple of chances, and Jason Gorton had to put his body on the line to thwart Connor Gaul as the midfielder looked to have created an opening, whilst Mark Haslam recovered well to put in an important tackle on Anthony Lynch as he shaped to shoot on the angle.
The closest either side came to scoring was when Russell turned and shot, only to see the ball cannon off the post, however from the half hour onwards the period drifted to a close.
Glossop opened up the second half with an early chance, Russell swivelling a shot from Johnson’s smart looped pass over the bar, but the Hillmen were then rocked by a penalty award to the Mintcakes.
Adam Jones appeared to have tackled cleanly just into the box; certainly he got the ball, but seemingly the referee took exception to the follow through. With GNE’s recent record of red cards, they could at least take solace that Jones was only shown a yellow card, but nevertheless Robert Bowman stepped up and netted the spot kick.
However, The Hillmen immediately stepped up in their response and on 58 minutes were level. A free kick was curled into the box and Jones rose highest to head the ball a metre over the line, despite the desperate attempts to push it away by a defender. Indeed, confusion took over for a minute as the referee awarded a penalty for handball but given his linesman had already run to halfway a brief consultation between the two soon saw the goal awarded.
Again the teams began to cancel each other out, and chances were scant until the 78th minute when debutant Simon Lenighan missed his kick and allowed Lynch to run on goal. However, Gorton quickly came across to cover and block the goalbound shot.
With 9 minutes to go a Chippendale drive from the edge of the area was deflected just wide and from the corner Gorton headed goalwards, Connor Martin flicked on, but into the grateful keepers’ arms. A draw was looking likely.
However, with 6 minutes left, Johnson was to have his say. It was the sliver of quality play that perhaps the game had lacked, and was a goal worthy of winning any match.
Match Report: Jonathan Haggart Photo: Steve Dyson