Steels pay penalty as ref rejects appeals

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There were home defeats for both Stocksbridge Park Steels and Sheffield FC.

Relegation-threatened Steels finished with nine men as they went down 1-0 against promotion chasing AFC Fylde, while Club suffered a 4-2 setback against play-off rivals Sutton Coldfield Town despite twice taking the lead.

Stocksbridge were unfortunate not to have come away with a point against a Fylde side that could be thankful for the referee turning down two strong penalty shouts.

The goal came seven minutes from the break when full-back Tom Eckersley nodded in a left wing corner and even then the home side felt the goal should have been ruled out for a push on centre-back Nicky Swirad.

Midfielder Matt Hamshaw looked to have won a 17th minute penalty when he was hauled down as he burst into the area. Then Danny South was unceremoniously bundled over a minute before the break after a Nathan Joynes effort had been hooked off the line but again there was nothing doing.

Steels were reduced to ten men six minutes after the break when Brett Bowen-Lovell brought down sub Mark Winslade with the Fylde looking to get clear.

Hamshaw went close with a lob that landed on the top of the net before all hopes of salvaging a point vanished on 85 minutes when Steve Ovington became the second played to be red carded for a two-footed challenge just four minutes after coming off the bench.

Sheffield boss Ian Whitehorne will not be happy with the defending that cost them the opportunity to narrow the gap to three-points on their visitors, who had started the day just outside the play-off places.

Richard Stirrup’s looping header from a Ben Algar cross saw Club take a 12th minute lead.

However, the visitors drew level on 34 minutes after a misunderstanding between Danny Cardwell and Rob Poulter let in Gary Hey.

Club regained the lead on 53 minutes when Zeph Thomas sent Stirrup clear to score his second of the game. But the visitors hit back two minutes later as Lee Parson’s caught the defence napping to poke home. Sutton had turned it around 10 minutes later with Joe Kettle heading in from a corner to make it 3-2 with the visitors wrapping up the points in injury time when Warren Burrell’s poor back header allowed Charlie Anagho-Ntamark to nip in and slot past Poulter.

Worksop Town remain fourth in the Premier Division despite being held 2-2 at Rushall Olympic.

Frickley Athletic came from behind twice to beat Grantham Town 3-2 at home with a Gavin Allot hat-trick including two penalties. Buxton boosted their play-off hopes beating Barwell 3-0 while Matlock Town were beaten 1-0 at Witton.