Blue Square Premier League – Battle at the top

by Stephen Fallows

The second half of the Easter programme was played over two days, with the big game happening on Tuesday, when Fleetwood missed the chance to win the Blue Square title after a 1-1 draw at home to Wrexham. The Dragons took the lead through Jake Speight early in the second half although the lead didn’t last long as Gareth Seddon equalized within six minutes and the teams could not be separated again after that. This still meant that the Cod Army still hold an eleven point lead over second placed Wrexham and will win the title by winning just two more points.

The rest of the games were played on the Monday and nothing else was decided with in promotion or relegation. Mansfield’s fine run continued and they look almost certain to take one of the play off places after beating Stockport 2-1 at home. The hosts took a two-goal lead through Adam Smith and Louis Briscoe. Jordan Rose scored a late goal for the Hatters but it was all too late.  York City left it late away at Alfreton to continue their own hunt for the play offs. It took the Minstermen over an hour before Matty Blair put them ahead. Lanre Oyebanjo secured the win just a few minutes later.

Kidderminsters Nick Wright may have only got half an hour playing time in against struggling Newport. The visitors had gone two goals ahead through Jake Reid’s first minute strike and Sam Foley and Kidderminster’s play off place looked in jeopardy, until Wright late appearance won the day. His first goal was a penalty with less than five minutes remaining, which he followed up with two injury time strikes to complete his hat trick and win the day for the Harriers.

Southport came from behind twice to rescue a point at Holker Street but they failed to make ground on the rest of the play off spots in a 2-2 draw. Joseph Jackson and Richie Baker put the Bluebirds ahead twice but they couldn’t hold onto the leads as Darren Stephenson and Tony Gray with a last minute penalty ensured the points were shared.  Luton’s first game with new boss Paul Buckle ended in victory for the home side at Kenilworth Road. Stuart Fleetwood scored two first half goals either side of Daniel Wishart’s strike. Keith Keane extended Luton’s lead only for Janos Kovacs scored an own goal to give Hayes hope towards the end but Andre Gray won the match for the Hatters.

A brace from Shaun Pearson helped Grimsby jump above opponents Gateshead in the table in a two win which saw long time contenders Gateshead almost certainly out of play off contention.  Forest Green kept their narrow play off hopes alive with a 2-0 win away at Bath City. A goal in each half from Yan Klukowski and Reece Styche earned the three points for the visitors.

A goal in each half from Andy Pugh and Harry Pell were enough as Cambridge beat already relegated Kettering and ensure Cambridge stayed just in the top half of the table.  Two penalties within a few minutes of each other meant that Ebbsfleet and Braintree fought out a 1-1 draw. Callum Willock put the hosts ahead from the spot after being fouled to win the penalty, but they were soon pegged back by Ben Wright’s spot kick just moments later.

Telford and Tamworth were deadlocked before their game was abandoned due to a waterlogged pitch, with the game still to be rescheduled.  Lincoln piled the misery onto Darlington, who now stand on the brink of relegation after a 5-0 defeat against the Imps. Two goals each from Danny Lloyd and Jefferson Louis and a strike from Jamie Taylor completed the rout which means Darlington will be relegated if they lose their next game.

Author Info

Stephen Fallows

Stephen Fallows

Barrow AFC fan, long since joined the ranks of the disenchanted after becoming disillusioned with the Premier League juggernaut, although keeping a keen eye on all things football and like every football fan, has an opinion on whats going on.

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