NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Steels end winless run by beating Loughborough

Two quick-fire goals in the closing stages of the first half saw Stocksbridge Park Steels come from behind to beat Loughborough Dynamo 2-1 at a Blustery Bracken Moor to clinch a first BetVictor East Division league victory in six games.

By The Newsroom
Sunday, 12th January 2020, 4:20 pm
Scott Ruthven is mobbed after scoring for Stocksbridge on Saturday. Photo by Peter Revitt.
Scott Ruthven is mobbed after scoring for Stocksbridge on Saturday. Photo by Peter Revitt.

“It was good to get a win under our belt again after the run we had been on,” said Steels boss Chris Hilton.

“I thought we worked really hard all over the pitch and defended well when we needed too. We should have wrapped up the points early in the second half when we created a number of really good chances but we got the win and that’s what matters.”

It was Loughborough though who made the breakthrough on 31 minutes. Michael Trench conceded a needless free-kick right on the edge of the box from which Curtis Burrows curled the free-kick around the wall and into the far corner.

Two minutes before the break Stocksbridge were back on level terms. Nodder played a great ball through to Luke Mangham down the inside left channel where the striker on his return from injury drilled a low shot across goal inside the far post.

It got even better in first half stoppage time as Steels turned the game on its head. A cross was headed back into the mix by Mangham for Scott Ruthven to volley the ball home from close range for 2-1 and what would turn out to be the winner.

Sheffield FC suffered their first ever defeat against Cleethorpes, going down 2-0 at the Linden Homes Club ground to leave them without a win in eight games of which five have been draws.

There was an early let off for Sheffield when in the fifth minute Scott Vernon’s effort rattled the woodwork.

Club were struggling to create much in front of goal and fell behind on 27 minutes, Jon Oglesby beating the offside trap to lob keeper Sam Kelly, frustratingly for Gavin Smith’s side the goal coming moments after a strong penalty shout for handball had been waved away.

Kelly did well midway through the second half to push away Alex Flett’s low shot to prevent the home side doubling the lead.

Sheffield’s went close to an equaliser on 83 minutes with their best chance of the game. Ben Turner got away down the right crossing into the box where Rieves Boocock guided a short goalwards only for a defender to get back and head clear from underneath the crossbar.

Club’s fate was sealed in the 90th minute when they conceded a penalty that Scott Vernon coolly slotted past Kelly.

Hallam had a frustrating afternoon as their Toolstation NCEL Division One promotion push took another knock following a goalless draw at relegation battling Ollerton Town that saw the hosts end a run of four defeats on the spin.

The Countrymen had the best of the chances including missing a second half penalty. Jordan Turner saw his free kick touched onto the crossbar by the home keeper in the opening ten minutes.Then Sam Smith had a header cleared off the line.

Turner was again denied by the woodwork inside the opening minute of the second half after a surging run into the area. Hallam should have hit the front on the hour when they were awarded a penalty only for the Ollerton keeper to dive low to his left to push away Smith’s spot kick.

Hallam are now 11-points adrift of the top four promotion slots.