Match report: Garstang FC 2 Longridge Town 1

Garstang claimed three points against Longridge Town on Saturday
Garstang claimed three points against Longridge Town on Saturday
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West Lancashire League

Town had arrived on a tremendous run of 21 victories and only one defeat in 23 games this season.

The home side made a couple of changes from the team which drew in midweek with Alan Coar and Mark Bevan returning.

In front of the Riversiders’ largest crowd of the season, the deadlock was almost broken in the opening moments.

Tom Graham’s header back to Dan Curwen fell short of the keeper and Leon McLoughlin nipped in and chipped the ball over the keeper but the ball hit the base of the post.

Garstang opened the scoring three minutes later when Alan Coar was fouled 25 yards out.

The resulting free kick was smashed home by Dave Jack with the help of a minor deflection to give them the lead.

Longridge countered almost immediately from the restart and almost equalised when McLoughlin’s header was brilliantly saved by Curwen from point blank range.

This seemed to spur Garstang on as they were outworking the leaders in midfield.

McLoughlin again hit the post for Town on the half-hour after good work from Joe Melling before Rick Coar hit the bar for Garstang.

It was brother Alan who doubled the lead when his first effort was blocked but he slotted home the rebound.

The same player also headed over before the break, after which Town manager Lee Ashcroft replaced Andrew Naylor with Jordan Bowen.

The move paid off on 53 minutes when Brad Carsley finished off McLoughlin’s cross from close range.

Town huffed and puffed without creating many clear chances as Garstang’s defence was resolute.

Mark Woods was denied by an excellent last gasp tackle, and many corners were defended well by the Garstang rearguard as time ticked down.

Garstang looked dangerous on the break with Rick Coar turning Alex Colquhoun’s diagonal cross into the keeper’s hands.

Longridge won a number of corners but under immense pressure Garstang were able to deal with these and see out the game for a tremendous and fully deserved victory.