Gillingham 1-1 Morecambe

MORECAMBE were denied their third successive win by a late Gillingham equaliser on Saturday.

In only the third minute Jevons had a chance from close range but failed to connect with Kevan Hurst’s header.

But Jevons was not to be denied later in the half as the Shrimps were awarded a penalty when Gills defender Matt Lawrence handled in the area and Jevons sent Alan Julian the wrong way from the spot.

Danny Carlton then had a half chance to make it 2-0 on the half hour with a volley from the edge of the box that was well saved by Julian.

The home side stepped up a gear towards the end of the half and Roche shone with a great save from Bayo Akinfenwa’s close-range header.

As the half came to a close both Chris McCready and Niall Cowperthwaite blocked goalbound efforts as the Shrimps defended stoutly.

Cody McDonald showed his quality when he cut inside from the left and drilled a low shot goalwards which Roche turned aside.

The same player then forced Roche into one of the saves of the season when Barcham headed back across goal and McDonald tried his luck with an overhead kick that was heading for the bottom corner.

With the Gills well in the ascendancy, Akinfenwa then set up a great chance for Danny Spiller but the midfielder side-footed straight at Roche.

Spiller was then again denied by the legs of Roche and with time running out the Shrimps looked set for one of their best wins of the season.

The Shrimps had a great chance to double their advantage when Jimmy Spencer was put through on goal but fired wide from 10 yards out.

It was to prove a costly miss as Roche was finally beaten two minutes from time a deep Jon Nutter cross was met by McDonald, planting a header back into the far side of the net.

Barcham twice fired wide from good openings in the closing stages but the Shrimps held on for a deserved point.

Gillingham: Julian; Fuller, Gowling, Lawrence, Martin (Nutter 56); Spiller, Weston (Payne 69), Maher (Rooney 56), Barcham; McDonald, Akinfenwa. Subs not used: Cronin (GK), J Payne, Bentley, Richards, Jackman.

Booked: Lawrence

Morecambe: Roche 9; Parrish 8, Haining 8, McCready 8, Cowperthwaite 7; Hurst 7 (Wainwright 72), Drummond 8, Hunter 8, Holdsworth 8, Jevons 7 (Brown 75), Carlton 7 (Spencer 64). Subs not used: Walker (GK), Bentley, Aley, Shuker.

Booked: Carlton, Drummond, Roche, Cowperthwaite

Referee: D McDermid

Attendance: 5,545