Gainsborough Town 1 Skegness Town 0
A solitary Daniel Martin goal just before half time was enough to secure a place in the Supplementary Cup Final for Gainsborough Town.
Martin struck in the 41st minute against a much-changed Lilywhites.
Despite enjoying more possession after the break, the seasiders failed to impose themselves on the game with any sustained pressure and the home side eased their way through to next month’s final with their sixth consecutive victory.
Skegness rescued a point with a last-gasp equaliser when the two sides met here in the league, but there was no repeat of their Houdini act.
Lilywhites’ boss Nick Chapman drafted in Damian Howland, Josh Smith, Sam Walker, Josh Nwokobia and Martin Jackson to cover for a long list of absentees.
This will have had some influence on the result, but Chapman was not prepared to make excuses after the tie.
“There were too many changes, but the best side won. We didn’t create enough chances,” he said.
Chances at both ends were in short supply; the best opportunities coming from setplays.
The seasiders conceded a string of free kicks on the edge of their penalty area, but defended them well against a stiff breeze and up the slope.
Gainsborough’s Adam Hind headed Daniel Cobb’s effort off the line and another Liam Parker header was scrambled away at the other end.
Martin had the ball in the Skegness net midway through the half, but his ‘goal’ was ruled out for a foul on Smith in the visitors’ goal.
He went close again in the 34th minute, but saw his 25-yard shot skim off the top of the cross bar.
Martin finally broke the deadlock when he tucked home the rebound from 12 yards when keeper Smith could only parry a fierce Leigh Hutchinson drive into the striker’s path.
After the break Skegness dominated possession, but the home side dealt with most of their aerial threat quite comfortably.
On the counter attack Gainsborough threatened to double their lead, but Smith’s only troublesome moment was when Martin crashed into him in a 50-50 incident.
Gainsborough picked up a few yellow cards after letting referee Wallhead know they felt James Dickinson was upended by Smith in another controversial moment of the game. A penalty at that point would surely have sealed victory, but Mr Wallhead waved away their appeals.
Gainsborough’s stand-in keeper Liam Andrews was also cautioned for arguing the case for a free kick when the seasiders were threatening from long throws late in the game.
Substitute Sam Walker brought out a great save from Andrews with his first touch, but a linesman’s flag would have ruled the goal out in any case.
The introduction of Josh Nwokobia added new impetus to the Skegness frontline, but the visitors lacked a cutting edge and Gainsborough survived to progress to the final at Lincoln United’s NTR Stadium on May 10, against Horncastle Town.
Skegness now turn their attention to the league and Saturday’s trip to Heckington United, knowing they have to win to keep their hopes of lifting the league crown alive.
Gainsborough Town: Liam Andrews, Daniel Guilliatt, Ashley Page, Adam Hind, Ben Russell, Brad Thomas, James Dickinson, Greg Andrews, Craig Lill, Daniel Martin, Leigh Hutchinson, Richard Lewis, Mark Larocca, Steve Hutchinson.
Skegness Town: Josh Smith, Damian Howland, Jamie Epton, Daniel Cobb, Miles Chamberlain, Jack Smith, Liam Parker, Liam Papworth, Jake Gibson, Matt Veall, McCauley Parker, Sam Walker, Josh Nwokobia and Martin Jackson.