March 21, 2011
FC United maintained their Evo-Stik Premier promotion challenge but needed a stoppage-time equaliser by Mike Norton to earn a 2-2 draw at fellow play-off hopefuls Buxton to stretch their unbeaten sequence to 11.
Karl Marginson’s men were heading for their first defeat in nearly seven weeks when former Altrincham striker Kieran Lugsden put the Bucks two-up inside an hour.
But goal ace Norton pulled one back before rescuing FC a point which keeps them firmly in touch with the top-five when he struck again in the fourth of six added minutes.
Ashton United remain in trouble near the foot of the table after crashing 1-0 to visiting North Ferriby, while Northwich’s home defeat to Stocksbridge was a huge blow to their play-off hopes.
Evo-Stik North title challengers Chorley seized on Chester’s surprise defeat at Lancaster to move within six points of them at the summit with Steve Foster and Tom Ince scoring to sink relegation-bound Leigh Genesis 2-1.
Salford, Trafford and Woodley all won, but Mossley and Radcliffe lost.
New Mills placed one hand firmly on the Vodkat League championship trophy with a Chris Hirst goal giving them a 1-0 win at Bacup.
Altrincham manager Ken McKenna admitted his resurgent Robins needed a helping hand from visitors Tamworth to boost their Blue Square Bet Premier relegation fight.
McKenna’s men played second fiddle to Des Lyttle’s Lambs until striker Damian Reeves seized on a dreadful blunder by Tamworth defender Richard Tait to give Alty an undeserved 36th-minute lead.
They were spurred on by the goal and sub Dale Johnson marked his return from Hyde by heading home a Robbie Lawton cross on the hour to seal a 2-0 triumph which lifts the Robins to within two points of safety with only eight games left.
Tamworth did have their moments with veteran keeper Stuart Coburn rescuing Alty with some fine saves, notably when he tipped a Kyle Perry header onto the bar.
McKenna said: “We started the game looking tired both mentally and physically, but we were all right once we’d gone in front and never appeared in any real danger after that.
“We did enough to take the three points and, while there’s still an awful lot of hard work to be done, this was a hugely important win for us in our battle to stay up.”
Meanwhile, an amazing goal by ex-Rochdale front man Lee McEvilly helped Droylsden rekindle their Blue Square Bet North promotion flame with an eyecatching 2-1 home win over title favourites Alfreton.
McEvilly struck with a half-volley delivered from inside his own half to secure the Bloods a victory which renews hopes of a push for the play-offs.
The former Spotland star had earlier set up Ciaran Kilheeney for Droylsden’s opener, but slack defending by James Vaughan then handed the high-flying Derbyshire visitors an equaliser.
Stalybridge extended their unbeaten run to eight games with a goalless draw against Guiseley. Relegation-haunted Hyde were without a game, Stafford plunging them back into the drop-zone by winning at Gloucester.