Skegness Town’s hopes of retaining the Lincs League title were given a boost on Wednesday evening.
Reigning champions Skegness Town won 2-0 at Louth Town Reserves while their title rivals Horncastle Town and Hykeham Town drew 1-1. These results mean Horncastle and Skegness are both on 39 points while Hykeham have 38 points.
In no particular order those teams will almost certainly finish in the top 3 this season. Skegness won the Lincs League last season and their hopes of defending the title are very much alive.
A minute’s silence was observed prior to kick off in memory of Derrick Richardson who was a Life Member, Vice President and former League Treasurer of the Lincs League. Both Louth Town and Skegness Town’s sincerest condolences go out to his family.
As for the match itself, it finished 2-0 to Skegness after second half goals by William Britton and McCauley Parker. Town played fine against the reigning champions and can have no regrets though.
In the first minute Dave Deane ran onto Ryan Johnson’s through ball and nearly scored shooting inches wide of the right post.
After surviving the early scare Skegness improved and William Britton had an effort blocked by Bradley Coulam. Former Town player Ben Davison then came close from distance before Liam Papworth almost opened the scoring.
Kieran Elliott played Papworth in and he chipped the onrushing Robbie Aldrich. However, Elliot Towl did well to get back and clear the ball just before it went in.
Towards the end of the first half Elliott raced clear and was denied by a good recovery from Bradley Coulam. Moments later Bradley Coulam made an even better challenge on Britton as he looked poised to score.
At the other end Deane had a shot palmed round the right post by Ashley Murrell at full stretch. It was a fantastic save and meant the score was still 0-0 at half time.
Unfortunately Johnson and Towl were both unable to return for the second half due to minor injuries. They were replaced by Adam Coddington and Nat Walton.
After the interval Aldrich pulled off a great save to keep out a powerful strike by Michael Hardy.
Skegness took the lead on 69 minutes in fortuitous circumstances. Bradley Coulam’s attempted clearance deflected off Hardy and straight into the path of Britton leaving him with a simple finish from close range.
Moments after scoring Britton came off for Daniel Reid. The substitute could have made an instant impact when he raced clear, but was thwarted by yet another last ditch tackle from Bradley Coulam.
Soon afterwards Davison was unlucky to see his chip land on the roof of the net from distance.
At the other end Chris Ella released Paul Coulam on the right and his cross was headed agonisingly wide of the right post by Chapman.
Just as it looked like Town would only lose their third midweek game in a row 1-0 McCauley Parker added a second in the 89th minute. It came when he cut inside from the left and fired a 20-yarder in off the crossbar.
That finished Town off and made the final score 2-0. Skegness winning their match while Horncastle and Hykeham both dropped points against each other was ideal for them.
Louth’s Ben Humphrey thought his team put up a good fight. He said: “Skegness Town are an excellent side and we gave them a run for their money.
“We matched them for most of the game and were very unlucky with the first goal. Then in the 89th minute they scored another when it looked like we would only lose 1-0 again. We began to tire late on and it’s a shame I couldn’t bring any substitutes on as I had to use both of them at half time.
“Skegness Town’s manager said we are a good young side and a few of their supporters agreed. This was a compliment and shows that people are realizing we are no pushover.”
Town are next in action on Saturday, 28 March, at home to Horncastle Town in the Lincs League (3 pm).