BLUES ON TOP AGAINST RAMSBOTTOM
Blues put their recent indifferent form behind them to a record a comfortable 4-0 victory over Ramsbottom United.
After enduring some struggles against lower division opposition in the FA Cup, it appeared Neil Baker's side found a league game something of a welcome distraction!
Lewis Short made his debut whilst Charlie Walford returned to the starting eleven and goalkeeper Ben Chapman was preferred in goal to Danny Roberts for his first competitive start of the season.
Blues made a lively start and Tim Grice went close after just 2 minutes when he flicked Rob Stevenson's cross into the side netting.
Chapman first piece of action was to pull off a fine save from a close range header in the 14th minute.
Two minutes later, Blues were in front as Rob Stevenson beat the offside trap to easily lob the ball over Sam Ashton in the Ramsbottom goal.
Moments later it was 2-0 when Dan Trickett-Smith broke through the middle advanced into the box and then slipped the ball under Ashton to make it 2-0.
Grice limped off injured just after the half-hour mark after pulling up with a muscle strain to be replaced by Jordan Johnson.
Chapman was in action again in the 36th minute when he did well to push Nathan Brown's strike over the bar.
Stevenson and Walford both went close just before the break both with shots that went just wide of the post.
After the break Leek control of the game looking untroubled at the back but without threatening to add to their tally until the 65th minute when Jordan Johnson was first to a long ball and nodded it over Ashton for a rare headed goal.
Eleven minutes later Darren Chadwick slammed home a penalty to wrap things up after Rob Stevenson was rather crudely upended in the box.
Baker will have wanted a clean sheet and that was preserved by Chapman in the 87th minute when he tipped a fierce Tom Brooks effort over the crossbar.
A much-improved performance from Blues than of late and a step in the right direction as Town look to get past Parkgate on Tuesday night in the FA Cup.
1. Ben Chapman
2. Lewis Short
3. Andy McWilliams
4. Marc Grocott
5. Scott Lycett
6. Darren Chadwick
7. Charlie Walford (14. Niall Maguire, 81)
8. Sam Hall
9. Tim Grice (12. Jordan Johnson, 34)
10. Dan Trickett-Smith (16. Zeph Thomas, 81)
11. Rob Stevenson
Unused subs: 12. Mat Bailey, 17. Danny Roberts
Yellow card: Tim Grice
Man of the Match: Darren Chadwick
Match Sponsored by Bury and Hilton