Holton le Clay 0, Skegness Town 1

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A MARK Lovelace free kick was all that separated these two teams in the first round of the Cusworth Cup, despite Holton le Clay from the East Lincs Combination finishing the match with nine men.

Lovelace’s sweetly struck set piece from 23 yards – his third goal in as many games – put last season’s finalists through.

But there was relief all round for the seasiders when they heard the final whistle.

Town were without Liam Papworth, Dean Seiner, Michael Gardner and Adam Broome.

Craig Booth had recovered from his bang on the head at Moorlands and Ross Trestrail stepped into midfield.

Against a side who have won only two of their games in the First Division of the East Lincs Combination, the Lilywhites struggled to find any rhythm in the first half and failed to breach the home side’s defences.

Lovelace bailed them out with his fierce free kick during the second period after substitute-less Holton had been reduced to ten men through injury.

Ten minutes from the end the plucky home side suffered a further blow when one of their players was sent off for a two footed lunge.

Skegness Town: Bentley, S Trestrail, Booth, L Cartwright, Forman, R Trestrail, Howland, Tuplin, Nicholls, Orrey, Lovelace.

On Saturday Skegness return to Lincolnshire League action when they travel to Lincoln Moorlands Railway Reserves hoping to complete a league and cup double, having knocked them out of the Supplementary Cup last month.

They visit Heckington United in the league on Saturday, March 17, followed by a trip to Boston United’s Jakemans Stadium three nights later.

This Saturday Skegness Town Reserves are at home to Kirton Town in the Boston Premier League (kick-off 2.30pm).