Cleethorpes Town 2 Pickering Town 0

Cleethorpes Town 2 Pickering Town 0

By David Simpson
29 January
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100% JANUARY FOR FLYING OWLS!


Clee saw off a dogged Pickering Town by 2-0 to move up a place to 3rd in the division and maintain their stranglehold on a play-off position.

A fierce finish by Jordon Cooke, supplemented by an early own goal, ensured an ultimately comfortable afternoon for Dave Smith’s men.

The manager made an enforced change from last weekend’s victory at Sheffield. With Josh Venney suspended, Hull City youngster McCauley Snelgrove was given the nod.

Line-up as follows in a 4-2-3-1 formation:

Goal: Tom Jackson
Defence: Tim Lowe, Jordon Cooke, Ben Middleton, Sam Topliss
Midfield 1: Liam Dickens, Alex Flett (c)
Midfield 2: McCauley Snelgrove, Brody Robertson, Luke Lofts
Attack: Scott Vernon

Subs: Leon Dawson, Josh Smaller, Loz McKay, Harry Middleton, Jack McMenemy

Great work before the start to make certain the fixture went ahead. Very strong winds caused damage to the dugouts and also downed a few small branches in one corner of the Myenergi Stadium. The Owls’ backroom staff went into overdrive to ensure that spectators could safely enjoy the day.

The gusting breeze would prove to be troublesome throughout, and it made life awkward for the players. However, whilst by no means a fluent spectacle, Clee still produced occasional moments of quality to deservedly snaffle all 3 points.

After Robertson had a shot saved, the lead was gained in the 10th minute. Snelgrove fed Lofts and the winger’s cross was diverted beyond his own keeper by Jack Johnson.

Just the start wanted by the home faithful in another decent attendance. Nevertheless, in truth, the rest of the opening half was fairly scrappy in the difficult prevailing conditions.

Pickering had forays forward, but Clee maintained a good defensive shape to ensure stopper Jackson was well protected.

At the other end, Lofts had a couple of eye-catching runs. Again though, the Pikes’ disciplined rear-guard kept their deficit to a single goal at the interval.

HT Cleethorpes Town 1 (Johnson og 10) Pickering Town 0

After the break, goalmouth action continued to be only occasional.

Substitute Dawson was unlucky to see a dipping effort cannon away to safety off the crossbar. Lofts was again in the action as well, when clumsily bundled into by an opponent on 69 minutes. No penalty given and Vernon’s follow-up was cleared.

Shortly afterwards, Jordon Cooke popped up in the box to settle any nerves. The defender has a happy knack of scoring when the opportunity arises, and he rifled into the top-corner to register his 3rd in the last 6 matches.

It was essentially now job done and the Owls saw out the rest of the encounter to record another important win.

FT Cleethorpes Town 2 (Johnson og 10, Cooke 72) Pickering Town 0 Attendance: 303

Another important result!

Not a classic by any means but a potential banana skin safely negotiated. Two-thirds of the way through the campaign now and 50 points achieved. Without tempting fate, the play-offs look well within reach.

I said last week that we can finish 3rd. With a big crowd cheering us on, I would fancy us strongly at home in a semi-final.

Well done to the players & management for a 100% January. The month of February looks tough – however, we very much have the momentum to carry us forward. Hope to see you at Brighouse next Saturday.

UP THE OWLS!

(Picture: man-of-the-match Liam Dickens receiving his reward!)

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