Garstang 3 Steeton AFC 1: Second-half goals give the Riversiders their first win of the season

Garstang won at the Riverside on Wednesday evening
Garstang won at the Riverside on Wednesday evening

Garstang FC gained their first win of the season on Wednesday with a 3-1 defeat of Steeton.

Riversiders boss Andy Payton was able to welcome back Will Kitchen and Jack Swindlehurst, while Tom Graham was also back.

There was an early setback for Garstang when, after just five minutes, the visitors took the lead.

A free-kick was sent into the Garstang box and, at full stretch, Cameron Ross deflected the ball into his own net while trying to block the cross.

Garstang dusted themselves down and didn’t allow that to impact them.

A much improved display from the opening day defeat saw them start to put pressure on the Steeton defensive unit with full-backs Phil Nagy and Joe Melling making marauding runs down the flanks and a much-improved service into the Coar brothers.

There was a good chance for Alan Coar, who also forced the keeper into a smart save, while Alex Pope, Jonny Hothersall and Melling produced some nice interplay as Garstang ended the first half a goal down.

The second half saw the home side continue with their momentum and they equalised on 57 minutes.

Pope hit a superb reverse ball into the path of Alan Coar, who made a clever run across the line, and as the keeper advanced, Coar superbly beat him with a first-time effort.

Steeton’s defensive unit had started to get frustrated with the Coars’ running and it cost them another goal seven minutes later.

Alan Coar was sent to the ground in the inside-left channel, Nagy curling in a free-kick which Ric Coar met with a powerful header to give Garstang their second goal and a 2-1 lead.

Steeton tried to get back into the game but both Ross and Ellis Hancox had very good games, Kitchen oozed confidence and assuredness in goal, while Graham and Swindlehurst won more of the ball in midfield, ably supported by substitute Freddie Mason.

This growing dominance in midfield started to free up more space for the lively substitutes Ben Roberts and Reece Barrett.

Steeton centre-back Stevie Pearson lost his discipline as Swindlehurst was subjected to a stamp on the chest while on the ground, seeing him sent off on 89 minutes.

Then, in added time, Kitchen hit a 50-yard free kick into Alan Coar, who laid the ball into Roberts and his ball was converted by Barrett from close range.