Skelmersdale United 0 Kendal Town 2
By Neil Leatherbarrow
Early goals in each half were enough to send Skelmersdale United to defeat in newly appointed manager Dave Powell's first home game in the Stormy Corner hot seat. Skelmersdale had tried to add some spark with four new signings in the starting 11, two more on the bench but things didn't begin well.
In the fifth minute, a passing movement across the midfield broke down and Kendal's Danny McGahon took possession before slipping a nicely weighted ball down the inside right channel. Forward Rob Bowman ran onto the ball and although stretching he was able to poke a right foot effort low inside goalkeeper Jack Sims' left hand post to give Powell the worst possible start.
Skelmersdale responded positively, new captain Liam Hollett headed home from the edge of the six-yard box from a floated-in left side free-kick, but his celebrations were curtailed when the assistant signalled he was marginally offside. In the 17th minute, only an excellent diving save kept Skelmersdale out, a left-wing corner found Andy Owens and his header was goal bound but the clawing hand of Will Kitchen saved a certain equaliser.
The balance of play was pretty even, a shot from Kendal's Anthony Lynch in the 25th minute looked dangerous but keeper Sims made it look like nothing as he dealt with it nonchalantly. At the other end, Lewis Codling went close on 35 minutes , his low drive being deflected for a corner. From the flag kick, Owens made ground at the near post but his flicked header went over the angle of post and crossbar. Centre-forward Owens was the fulcrum of most of Skelmersdale's offensive moves and he saw one shot go over the crossbar. Kendal's Paul Dawson saw a rising shot of his own go over the Skem bar too.
At the interval it was fair to say that the difference between the teams was the finish of Bowman that had produced the only goal. In the 5st minute, Dawson put Matthew Clarke into space own the right. On reaching the line he pulled the ball back across goal where, after the ball had bypassed two forwards, Rich Seear popped up at the far post to guide a shot into the Skem net from about eight yards to make it 2-0.
With a two-goal lead, Kendal were able to pay that extra bit of attention into defending and made things difficult for Skelmersdale,especially if they were going to salvage something from the match. Skelmersdale's Codling buzzed round but his best attempt went just wide of the post from a few yards, a possiblt the nearest to a goal was a Jason Jeffries header across the face of goal, but no-one was able to get a telling touch as the goal beckoned.
In the dying minutes, Skelmersdale were reduced to ten men, Jeffries was dismissed for a second yellow card,although it was probably to late to make any difference.
Skelmersdale United:Sims, Baxendale, Jeffries, Vaughan-Muscat, Hollett, Jones, Redmayne, Smith, Owens, Codling, Coleman De Graft.
Subs: Crook, Roddy, Cringle, Burey.
Kendal Town: Kitchen, Aspin, Hoctor, Dawson, McDonald, Wardle, McGahon, Lynch,Seear, Bowman, Clarke.
Subs: Rothwell, Stanway, Thomas, Morris.
Referee Ian Walsh