NCEL Division One
Winterton Rangers 1 Skegness Town 0
Skegness Town boss Nathan Collins may have been disappointed with the result after losing out by a solitary goal to fourth-placed Winterton Rangers.
But he was delighted with the performance.
And what made his day even better was the fact that other results from elsewhere in the division provided the Lilywhites with a deserved lifeline.
Indeed, Harworth Colliery’s defeat at home to fellow strugglers Ollerton Town meant the seasiders’ were guaranteed Step 6 football for next season.
“That was a great performance by our boys today, despite the result,” said a proud Collins after the match.
“We fully deserved something out of that after bossing the game for long spells.”
Collins is experienced enough to know that you don’t always get what you deserve in football. But he soon recovered from the disappointment of defeat when news of Harworth’s result filtered through.
The Lilywhites were mathematically safe going into the final game of the season, at home to East Yorkshire Carnegie tomorrow night (Tuesday).
“Retaining our status in this league was our priority and we have achieved that,” said Collins.
“It just goes to show how far we have come in recent months and we can now start planning for next season.
“The commitment from the players out there today was first class and with a bit more luck we could have come away with the points.”
Fifteen minutes in it looked as though Town had made the breakthrough their bravery deserved.
Jordan Smith’s corner from the left was hit with pace and Jordan Quibell in the home goal misjudged the flight. But as the ball nestled inside the side netting at the far post the referee blew for a foul by King on the keeper.
At the other end James Lambley had to be alert to pluck a deflected cross out of the air, but for most of the half his defenders dealt with everything that was thrown at them.
Tom Sawyer did well to head clear a dangerous-looking corner from the left after half an hour, but minutes later Tyla Bell won a free kick from Bailey Forth near the right hand side byline.
When the ball was swung over to the far post the Skegness defence was found wanting and Liam Nelthorpe rose unmarked to score against the run of play.
Skegness continued to probe and when Ford found space in the Rangers penalty area he curled a shot towards the far post, only for full back Robbie Start to head off the line.
The second half began with Rangers on the attack and they carved open a couple of early chances for Noel Burdett, which he squandered.
Callum Foster also went close after taking the ball round Lambley.
At the other end Town’s best chance fell to Jordan Smith, who cut in from the left and tested Quibell with a low shot.
TOWN: J. Lambley, Sibbick, Norburn, L. Lambley, Forth, Clarke, Smith, Sawyer, Ford, King, Morrall, Britton, Warren, Steadman, Evison, Birch.