Alfreton leave it late to clinch rare away win
Alfreton Town celebrated their first away victory since Nicky Law's swansong in February on Tuesday night, leaving it late to overcome a vibrant Leamington side who had twice taken the lead.
The game was just 12 minutes old when Billy Priestley caught Ahmed Obeng as he ran along the bye-line, the referee awarding a penalty which was unusually converted with aplomb by home keeper Tony Breeden.
The Reds though only had to wait a further eight minutes before drawing level, Craig Westcarr smashing the ball into the net off the underside of the crossbar after taking a return pass from Adam Smith.
Chris Sharp then had a shot blocked by Richard Taundry from a Smith cross, but midway through the first half Alfreton conceded in familiar style from a corner taken by Kieran Dunbar, which was turned in at the back post by Stefan Moore.
In response a Brendon Daniels free-kick saw Tom Platt head wide from a tight angle and as half-time approached Moore had a golden opportunity to increase Leamington`s lead, but failed to connect properly with a right wing cross.
That miss was punished in the 45th minute when a Smith free-kick caused confusion in the box and allowed Luke Shiels to turn and prod home from close range.
In added time a long throw saw another Moore effort saved by Chris Elliott and there was still time for Sharp to head over from a Cieron Keane delivery.
Seven minutes into the second half the Reds’ contingent stood in disbelief as referee Simon Mather booked Daniels for simulation when it clearly looked like he had been upended in the area.
Bradley Wood was only just off target from 20 yards, then with 17 minutes to go and Alfreton stepping up the pressure a Daniels cross allowed sub Ricky German to win a corner with a header, from which Priestley saw a subsequent header held by Breeden.
A superb one handed save by the keeper from Daniels as he followed up German`s run and shot kept Leamington in contention, but they could only hold out until the 89th minute when Daniels’ corner produced a Priestley shot that was blocked before Platt lashed home the loose ball from six yards.
LEAMINGTON: Breeden; Taundry, Gudger, Clarke [Magunda 66], English, Mace, Dunbar, Gittings, Moore, Edwards, Obeng [Thompson-Brown 78]. Subs not used: Bishop, Revan, Canavan.
ALFRETON: Elliott; Topliss [Disley 61], Shiels, Priestley, Keane, Wood, Platt, Smith [Jennings 66], Daniels, Westcarr, Sharp [German 61]. Subs not used: Allan, Robertson.
Referee: Simon Mather.