Sills and Betteridge
Skegness Town 1
Ruston Sports 5
Skegness Town continued their challenging run-in to the end of the season with a poor display against one of the Sills and Betteridge Lincolnshire League high-flyers.
But the result paled into insignificance after a serious injury to Town’s John Courtney.
The player was in obvious pain after a tenth minute clash and an ambulance was called.
After officials were advised by the emergency services not to move him, Courtney spent over an hour in the centre of the pitch before being taken by ambulance to hospital for treatment for his leg injury.
Good wishes have followed from various sources and the club wish John a speedy recovery. It was a blow to Town to lose such an influential player, who has been one of their best and most consistent performers this season.
And five minutes after the restart, they lost Ben Davison through injury as the fixture pile continued to take its toll.
Others appeared to be carrying injuries as they tackled their fourth game in eight days.
But Town went close to putting all that behind them when Troy Lonslow rattled the cross bar with a snap shot.
At the other end Sports thought they had scored when leading scorer Gavin Mackie rose to head a corner from the left goalwards. The ball struck an upright and somehow full back Ben Drysdale and keeper Ryan Thompson scooped it off the line between them.
Mackie continued to provide the visitors’ biggest threat and Thompson did well to hold onto another sharp volley from the Sports front man.
Both sides showed they were keen to take the points. The Lincoln-based visitors are pushing for runners-up spot in the league, while the Lilywhites are trying to improve on their league standing.
The game was heading for a goalless first half when Mackie got in behind the home defence and fired past Thompson into the far corner.
It was disappointing for the seasiders, who had matched the visitors for most of the half.
But early in the second period they fell further behind when Alex Knibbs doubled their lead.
The Lilywhites were thrown a lifeline on the hour when Daniel Reid was brought down in the penalty area, but stand-in skipper Joby Gowshall’s spot kick was saved by Carl Stubbs in the Sports goal.
Less than 20 seconds later, the gap was three goals instead of the anticipated one, after Stubbs released his strikers on a counter and Knibbs grabbed his second of the match.
Mackie’s penalty made it 4-0 with 15 minutes to go and another mix-up at the back allowed Joe Butler to roll the ball into an empty net for 5-0.
James Bland scored a late consolation for the seasiders in the dying minutes.
Skegness Town - Ryan Thompson, Ben Drysdale, Jake Akers, Harry Ralph, Ben Davison, Joby Gowshall, John Courtney, Daniel Reid, Troy Lonslow, Liam Papworth, Andy Reeson, James Bland, Macaulay Parker.
Tomorrow evening (Thursday) Skegness Town are in action again when Louth Town Reserves make the journey to Burgh Road for a 6.30pm kick-off.
On Saturday Skegness entertain Grimsby Borough Reserves (kick-off 3pm). Next Monday Town welcome CGB Humbertherm to Burgh Road for a 6.45pm kick-off.