Marine 1-1 Buxton
By Dave McMillan
Mbalanda's French mustard for Mariners at MTA...
By Tom Clarke
It was honours even at the Marine Travel Arena on Saturday afternoon, as Marine came away with a point to boost their Evo-Stik League survival hopes.
‘Keeper Joe Hilton was forced into several impressive saves by a physical Buxton side in a first half which saw chances at both ends of the pitch.
Marine Player of the Month for March Charley Edge fashioned his team a few chances from the flanks, but the home side couldn’t convert.
Buxton defender Josh Meade was forced off just before half-time after a collision with Charley Edge, Tom Dean coming on to replace him.
The visitors took the lead midway through the second half, John Pritchard looping the ball over the head of Hilton from the left side of the six-yard box.
New Marine signing Brett Mbalanda showed pace and power up top throughout the game, and notched his second of the week when lashing home from inside the box to equalise for the home side on 73 minutes.
Both sides pushed on in attempt to win the game, Edge going close a couple of times in the closing minutes, most significantly with a free-kick narrowly over the bar. However, the match finished a point apiece.
Marine now travel to Basford United next Saturday before a vital Easter Monday clash with Bamber Bridge back at the MTA.
Marine: Joe Hilton; Sam Tattum, James Joyce, Danny Shaw, Chris Doyle; Kenny Strickland (James Murray, 72), Charley Edge, Steve Irwin, Craig Carney; Danny Mitchley (C), Brett Mbalanda.
Unused subs: Sam Barnes, James Short, Dylan Sumner, Germano Mendes.
Buxton: Theo Roberts; Josh Meade (Tom Dean, 37), Alex Brown, Nico De Girolamo, Brad Roscoe; Ash Young, Jude Oyibo (Adam Freeland, 83), Callum Chippendale (C), John Pritchard; Diego De Girolamo, Liam Hardy.
Unused subs: Oscar Woods, Brad Grayson, Adam Bruce.
Referee: Mr. Darren Rogers (Warrington).
Assistants: Mr. Shaun Taylor (Preston), Mr. Matthew Howarth (Preston).