After a narrow loss to Whitchurch Alport on Bank Holiday Monday, United ended a packed August on a high with a 5-2 win over New Mills in the FA Vase First Qualifying Round.
The game was played at New Mills' Church Lane Stadium where Paul McNally made a few changes from earlier in the week with Jack Cookson in goal and Matty Scoullar in place of the unavailable Alex Griffiths while Cameron Glennon returned from injury on the bench alongside newly signed Luke Holden-Moakes.
United started brightly with a Richard Brodie cross finding Joe Cawley at the far post, who fired a shot narrowly past the post before Chris Carroll swept a free-kick over the bar at the other end. Brodie turned provider again on six minutes with Cawley slotting past Alex Fowell for a 1-0 lead.
New Mills should have levelled on 10 minutes as Carmel Tulomba's shot from distance beat Jack Cookson but cannoned achingly off the bar and post before being cleared. A blistering wing run from Cawley saw him picking out the run of Brodie who could only fire over the target.
Tulomba drew a stop from Cookson with a powerful header before Brodie blazed a shot wide at the other end. The sides were soon level though as Nathan Webb collected a lofted pass from Adam Cooper to fire past Cookson for 1-1 on 23 minutes.
United had a great chance to retake the lead on the half hour as a rapid counter from Tom Croughan saw Fowell advance on him, a lob from the forward fell short of the target with great defence denying Cawley a certain open goal.
Cawley claimed his second goal in style four minutes later as Brodie and Croughan combined to leave their strike partner in open space to smash the ball high into the net past Fowell for 2-1.
The Millers could barely draw breath before they went 3-1 behind, Brodie taking advantage of a confusion in midfield to release Cawley on the wing who swept over a cross for Liam Wood who chested the ball down before rifling past Fowell.
After playing a part in the three United goals, Brodie looked to have claimed a goal himself on 42 minutes. However, as he connected to Matty Coughlan's free-kick the ball cannoned in off Tom Millington for 4-1.
New Mills were gifted a penalty on 44 minutes, Marvin Molyneux upending Webb and Taylor Maguire finding the bottom corner with the spot kick to cut the gap to 4-2 into half-time.
United wasted no time in restoring their three goal advantage with Brodie claiming a goal that was definitely his as he chested the ball down and slotted past Fowell for 5-2 on 49 minutes.
The Millers' response saw Tulomba force a diving low save from Cookson after a low cross ahead of a long range Maguire free-kick sailing over the bar and Tulomba header at Cookson from Cooper's cross.
Anthony Cato drew a low Fowell save from just outside the area before Croughan fired over from an angle. Maguire took aim from a similar position at the other end and stung the palms of Cookson. A rasping effort from Webb crept narrowly over the bar before both Brodie and Cawley went close to improving their tallies while substitute Cameron Glennon sent a long drive narrowly past the post.
The final whistle saw United's safe passage into the next round against Wythenshawe Town confirmed and also drew a hectic and exciting August to a close on a high.
Skelmersdale United- Cookson, Scoullar (Glennon 63), Coughlan, Molyneux, Tyrer (c), J.Grimshaw (Holden Moakes 67), Wood, Cato (Keegan 72), Brodie, White, Croughan. Subs not used- Hamid, Barnes.
New Mills- Fowell, Roach, Millington, Carroll (c), Sherriff (Miles 80), Cooper, Webb, Elliot, Tulomba (Riley 74), Thiaw (Whyment 87), Maguire. Subs not used Lawson, Idugbor.