Strong Skem Dent Tigers Title Hopes
Hyde United 0 Skelmersdale United 0
By Simon Driscoll
After Monday's stunning victory, Skelmersdale United extended their unbeaten start to the month with a hard fought 0-0 draw at promotion chasers Hyde United.
Dave Powell made just one change to the squad with Jack Lenehan returning from injury on the bench in place of Eddie Toner. Hyde started the better of the two sides with Elliot Rokka forcing a defensive block before former Skem forward Dominic Marie drew a strong stop from Callum Roberts. Skem's response was a superb through pass from Liam Davies to Scott Bakkor who advance on goal and drew a diving stop from Tigers 'keeper Peter Crook.
Hyde were unlucky not to open the scoring as Max Leonard rattled the cross bar with a stunning effort from 25 yards before Josh Wardle headed clear a dangerous cross from Luke Porritt. The Hyde forward went closer after a lay off from Rokka minute later saw him shoot past the post.
Clever play between Porritt and Ross Daly led to Kyle Brownhill whipping over a cross which saw Roberts parrying and Davies hooking clear. Roberts was called into action again with a fingertip save from Paddy Miller's header with the Tigers captain unable to fire in the rebound. A blistering run from substitute Bevan Burey saw him sashay through the Hyde midfield before teeing up Bakkor who was unable to create a shot on goal. Seconds later, good pressure from Jordan Darr saw him intercept and advance on goal, forcing a strong stop from Crook.
The first chance of the second half fell to Skem as Bakkor picked out Burey on the chase with the resulting shot curling past the post. Hyde's response saw Miller cut inside and force a low save from Roberts who later saved from Marie's close range header. At the other end, a rapid counter from Bakkor saw him find Mike Roddy who tried his luck from distance with Crook collecting comfortably. Hyde went achingly close to taking the lead as a lay-off from Leonard put Marie in on goal with a superb reaction save from Roberts denying the forward.
Leonard swept a free-kick over the bar for the hosts before Gay latched on to a free-kick to head at goal with Roberts collecting while Davies swept a shot past the post at the other end. Hyde continued to threaten and went close again as Leonard's shot from just outside the area crept over the bar. One final chance for the hosts saw them denied a last-gasp win as a dash forward from substitute Dominic McHale saw him force a stop from Roberts before his rebounded effort was blocked by a stunning goal-line clearance from Jack Fleming,
The final whistle sounded with United the happier of the two teams having all but sealed safety from relegation while Hyde's title hopes suffered a blow.
Hyde United- Crook, Harrison, Brownhill, Daly (Khamsuk 70), Gay, Miller (c), Rokka (McHale 65), Lipka, Marie, Leonard (Deegan 78), Porritt. Subs not used - Coates, Jones.
Skelmersdale United - Roberts, Baxendale, Fleming, Roddy (Hollett 89), Mooney (c), Wardle, Darr (Lenehan 65), Molyneux, Bakkor,, Davies, Barrigan (Burey 32). Subs not used - Owolabi, Cheetham.
Referee - Bob Roberts