Match report by Dave McMillan.
Marine’s interest in the Doodson Sport League Cup ended on Tuesday night, as they were defeated 2-1 at Lancaster City’s Giant Axe.
Frequent hail and snow showers made for difficult playing conditions but the teams produced an open and entertaining game that was pretty even, although Marine finished the stronger after the Dolly Blues were reduced to 10 men with eight minutes left.
Matt Cooper made a flurry of saves to keep City at bay early on, firstly tipping Billy Akrigg’s piledriver over the bar at full stretch before also keeping out good efforts from Neil Marshall’s header and then Reece Pearce’s low shot.
Lloyd Ellams had Marine’s best chance of the half, getting behind the defence and attempting to skate past Mike Hale, but the appropriately named custodian did well to deny the rangy striker by smothering at his feet.
Lancaster took the lead when Pearce was adjudged to have beaten the offside trap, racing through to drill in to the bottom corner of Cooper’s net with 41 minutes gone.
The Mariners responded within two minutes, Jamie Menagh’s free kick from the right being impressively headed in to his own net off the post by Simon Wearing under challenge from Ellams.
Marine always had a threat going forward, and should have taken the lead seconds in to the second half when Christian Langos got free down the right, his cross being met by the stretching Ellams from inside the six yard box but the ball flew over the bar.
The Dolly Blues regained the lead on 58 minutes, a half cleared ball being collected by substitute Tom Kilifin to net with a cross shot from a tight angle.
Marine pushed hard for the goal that would have taken the tie to penalties but couldn’t find a way through as conditions worsened, Ellams and Tom Owens having shots saved by Hale but the hosts held on, even after Sam Bailey’s dismissal for a second caution after clattering Owens.
Lancaster City: Mike Hale, Sam Bailey, Gavin Clark (Ben Hudson 72), Jacob Davis, Neil Marshall (Cap), Garry Hunter, Simon Wearing (Tom Kilifin 45), Billy Akrigg, Matty Poole, Reece Pearce (Daniel Birch 77), Lee Dodgson.
Unused subs: Aaron Taylor, Michael Donlon. Cautions: Bailey x 2, Dodgson.
Marine: Matt Cooper, Karl Clair, Steve Wainwright, Andy Nicholas, Joel Bembo-Leta (Cap), Liam Blake, Jamie Menagh, James Foley, Lewis Codling (Dan Fearnehough 70), Lloyd Ellams (Tom Owens 75), Christian Langos.
Unused subs: Sean Hessey, James Mitchison (G/K). Cautions: None.
Referee: Mr. David Underwood; Assistants Mr. Paul Bell, Mr. Ian Walsh.