Frickley Athletic came from behind with a second half Gavin Allott penalty, but were forced to settle for a point from a 1-1 draw in their Evo-Stik Premier Division game at home to 10-man Stamford on Saturday.
Frickley were bolstered by the inclusion of recent signings Ryan Paczkowski and Tyler Collishaw after both were cup-tied for the Doodson Sport Cup win over Belper Town, but were unable to find the net in the opening half.
Andy Villermann also returned to the side at left-back in place of the injured Steve Gardner and the Blues had the first real chance when a quickly taken free-kick found Allott in space in the box, but his angled shot was blocked by the legs of keeper Alex Lynch.
Jon Challinor curled a 20-yard shot wide for Stamford before Daniel Lawlor was forced to clear off the line from Allott after Paczkowski had wriggled through.
The Blues missed a great chance on the half-hour after Collishaw received a pass from Allott and beat Challinor and Ryan Walker inside the box before crossing for the unmarked Luke Hinsley at the far post, but he took too long and his shot was charged down.
Hinsley cleared a header from Lawlor off the line on 37 minutes following a corner and Richards beat Simpson with an angled shot which was going just wide before Joe Wilcox cleared the danger. In first half stoppage time Stamford went even closer as Jordan Smith got his head to a deep free-kick only to send his header just wide.
Frickley started to force the pressure in the second half time with good work from Collishaw on the left seeing in the 49th minute him send over a teasing cross which Jack Ashton headed over his own bar with Allott waiting to pounce.
A minute later a corner from Luke Jeffs was eventually returned to him and when he swung the ball back into the box Sam Denton headed into the arms of Lynch.
Allott was then denied by a good save from Lynch after cutting in from the left to fire in a low shot and Paczkowski’s glancing header from a Jeffs corner flew just wide.
The referee waved away big shouts for a penalty after Collishaw went down in the box and as the Blues kept attacking Allott was again denied by Lynch. But Stamford immediately broke away to take the lead with Nabil Shariff curling a well struck shot from 20 yards into the bottom right hand corner to leave Simpson no chance.
Frickley looked to hit straight back and after Allott’s header deflected just wide they equalised from the resulting corner as Allott was pushed over from behind by Jason Field and the referee pointed to the spot. Allott picked himself up to convert to make it 1-1 in the 69th minute.
Stamford’s Ryan Robbins was then sent-off for elbowing Jeffs a minute later. But the Blues were unable to take advantage of their extra man as Paczkowski headed wide from a Villermann cross and Allott’s shot was superbly saved by Lynch.
Denton did have the ball in the net from a Jeffs corner, but his effort was disallowed for a foul.
In stoppage time Villermann stabbed the ball over the bar from six yards while Bloor and Denton had shots charged down before Wilcox put an angled 20 yard shot just wide.
Frickley Athletic: Simpson, Wilcox, Villermann, Picton, Denton, Jeffs, Hinsley, Bloor, Paczkowski, Allott, Collishaw (Ghaichem 82).
Referee: Tom Bramall
Frickley face a tough task this Saturday when they travel to play sixth-placed Buxton in their next league game (kick-off 3pm).