GAVIN Allott ensured Frickley Athletic an early Christmas present when his late goal gave the Blues all three points against high-flying Hednesford Town at Westfield Lane on Saturday.
Karl Rose’s men ran out 2-1 winners against their second-placed visitors, a win that stretches the Blues’ unbeaten home record to eight matches in all competitions.
It was a deserved win, with Frickley continuing their trait of upping their game against the Evo-Stik Premier Division’s higher teams this season.
Chris Howarth fired an early warning shot for the hosts before Luke Hinsley’s deflected shot gave Rose’s men the lead just before the half-hour mark.
Hednesford were stung into action and Sean O’Connor tested Tom Woodhead before the Blues goalkeeper failed to hold on to a 40-yard Elliott Durrell free-kick and the ball slipped through his fingers and into the back of the net.
The second half continued at the same tempo but the Frickley defence held firm at all the slick Hednesford attack had to throw at them.
The hosts had chances of their own, with Jake Picton striking a volley just over the bar and Allott heading a Luke Jeffs free-kick harmlessly over.
The winner came ten minutes from time when Allott collected a long clearance from Woodhead before beating two men, cutting across the edge of the penalty area and rifling a low drive just inside Crane’s near post.
It was a day to forget for the Hednesford goalkeeper, who saw red with five minutes to go for a professional foul.
Aaron Rey did almost snatch a late levelled for the visitors, however, but he lifted his shot over the bar in stoppage time.
Frickley: Tom Woodhead, Terry Barwick, Luke Jeffs, Jake Picton, Patrece Liburd, Danny Stimpson, Chris Howarth, Matty Bloor, Luke Hinsley, Gavin Allott, Jason Yates. Unused subs, Chris Wood, Micah Bleau. Jassim Alali, Joe Davies, Zack Levers.
Hednesford: San Crane, John Disney (Sam Hornby 85), Sam Craven, Ben Bailey, Francis Francino, Dave MacPherson (Neil Harvey 70), Jamey Osborne, Elliott Durrell, Sean O’Connor, Aaron Rey, Nathan Woolfe (Sam Barnes 79). Unused sub: Alex Melbourne.
Referee: Mr David Storrie.
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