Lancaster City 2-1 Harrogate Railway Athletic

Jordan Connerton fires in Lancaster City's winner against Harrogate Railway Athletic.
Jordan Connerton fires in Lancaster City's winner against Harrogate Railway Athletic.
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Lancaster City continued to keep pace with the leading pack after securing back-to-back wins with victory over Harrogate Railway Athletic at Giant Axe.

With the stormy weather taking its toll on the playing surface the game was at times very scrappy and lacked the usual ebb and flow of a City game.

But despite missing skipper Neil Marshall, Simon Wills and the absent Mark Jackson the Dolly Blues had the better of the first-half battle.

Simon Wearing drew a great double save from Peter Crook as City pressed, but the visiting stopper would soon turn from hero to villain.

Late in the first half under pressure from Wearing ‘keeper Crook scuffed a clearance only as far as Tom Kilifin 30 yards from goal with the City winger taking a touch and composing himself to curl an effort over a stranded Crook and into the empty net.

With just three minutes left in the half it looked like City were cruising into the break with a one-goal lead, but Rail winger Colin Hunter had other ideas.

A great team move down the left flank culminated with a superb chipped pass over the Lancaster defence to striker Nathan Cartman who raced in on goal to hit a low drive under Mike Hale to equalise with the last kick of the half.

After the tight opening 45 minutes the second half was much more open with both teams wanting all three points.

It was the Dolly Blues however, and the free-scoring Jordan Connerton, that capitalised on the extra space on offer.

Collecting the ball on the left side of the box just before the hour mark, the City striker turned his man and used the space to rifle a shot with his weaker right foot into the top-left corner of the net.

The goal gave the second half even more life with both teams having chances.

Harrogate almost capitalised on a rare spill from City stopper Hale but couldn’t squeeze the ball through a crowded City defence, whilst Connerton drew a top-drawer reaction save from Crook to keep the visitors in the game.

Both defences held firm as the game wound down however to keep the Dolly Blues firmly in the race for the playoffs.

Lancaster City: Hale 7, Henry 6, Steel 6, Clark 7, Elderton 7, Donnelly 6, Akrigg 7, Hunter 7, Kilifin 6, Wearing 7, Connerton 8.

Star man: Jordan Connerton - Continues to show his true quality.