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First Team

Vanarama National League North Roundup

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Posted by Kelly Gilchrist
Posted on Sat 17 Dec 2016
Posted in First Team

Four of the top five sides faced off against each other, with Darlington visiting Kidderminster and Chorley hosting Tamworth, as the table is starting to take shape midway through the season.
FC Halifax scraped a point in the dying seconds at the MBi Shay against AFC Telford United. Joe Fitzpatrick opened the scoring for the away side with one of the best strikes he will hit in his whole career. The Shaymen left it until late to equalise though, the last few minutes in fact, when full-back Josh Wilde found himself in Telford’s box as he smashed the ball into the roof of the net to secure the home side a point.
Table toppers AFC Fylde surprised no-one after scoring five past Gloucester City. Runaway top goal scorer Danny Rowe once again grabbed himself a brace, with Dan Bradley, James Hardy and Brendon Daniels also getting on the act. The home side did take the lead two minutes into the game through Sam Avery but that turned out to be the only joy they got from a ruthless afternoon.
Second placed Kidderminster Harriers grabbed an important win against Darlington 1883 after Keith Lowe grabbed the winning goal with over 10 minutes to go. The away side took the lead through David Syers but it only took Harriers a minute to get back on level terms, and then Lowe scored to give the promotion contenders all three points.
The other game involving two play-offs placed sides Chorley and Tamworth ended in both sides picking up a point. The Lancashire side took an early lead in the second half through Scott Leather before Tamworth equalised just nine minutes later through Jed Davies. Chorley still sit just one point above the away side in the league table.
Averting our attention now to the bottom end of the table and Bradford Park Avenue picked up another impressive victory on home soil against tough opponents in Brackley Town. The away side wasted no time in taking the lead when Luke Graham grabbed Brackley’s sole goal in the second minute. Park Avenue equalised on the stroke of half-time thanks to Tom Davie. The home side then took all three points from the game in stoppage time when Matt Hill scored in the 91st minute.
Altrincham’s sorry season continues after going down 3-0 at Edgeley Park to Stockport County to leave them sitting rock bottom on only seven points. Danny Lloyd opened the scoring before Jimmy Ball grabbed a second, and then Sam Minihan made it worse for Alty in the final minutes.
Fellow relegation haunted side Stalybridge Celtic also failed to pick up any points once again. Celtic did open the scoring in the first half when Gary Gee converted a penalty. The home side equalised in the 42nd minute through an own goal, then two minutes Reece Styche put Town into a 2-1 lead on the stroke of half-time, and that’s the way it stayed for the second half.
Gainsborough Trinity now only sit one point and place above the relegation zone. Trinity managed to earn themselves a hard-fought point at home to Worcester City after a 1-1 draw. The relegation haunted side opened the scoring through Ashley Worsfold ten minutes into the game, before Steven Craig levelled it up 15 minutes later.
Mid-table FC United of Manchester were pegged back by Boston United as both sides took a share of the spoils. Greg Smith opened the scoring for The Pilgrims on the 24th minute and they held onto the lead up until midway through the second period when George Thomson scored the equalising goal, as both sides took a point.
Curzon Ashton kept up their good form at home as they recorded a victory over mid-table Harrogate Town. Alex Brown grabbed the only goal of the game in the 62nd minute as Curzon moved themselves away from the relegation zone.
And finally Alfreton Town and Salford City shared a point at North Street. Paul Clayton opened the scoring for Nicky Law’s side in the opening half. Sam Walker grabbed the eventual equaliser with only just over ten minutes to play, as City sit just one place and three points off the play-off places.

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