Veteran Kevin Ellison pops up to save Morecambe at Newport County
Newport County 1 Morecambe 1Kevin Ellison chose the perfect time to score his first goal of the season as his 78th-minute strike earned the Shrimps a share of the spoils at Rodney Parade.
The veteran frontman came off the bench to take advantage of a slip from Newport defender Tyler Forbes to produce a fine finish to give his side a welcome point after two successive defeats.
It was a vital goal as the Shrimps looked set for defeat after former Morecambe striker Padraig Amond opened the scoring for the home side after just 20 seconds and had created the better chances.
Morecambe made two changes to the side that lost to Mansfield in midweek with Aaron Wildig and Rhys Oates recalled into the side in place of Ellison and Ben Hedley.
The two newcomers, long with their team-mates, had failed to touch the ball before the home side took the lead.
A ball into the Morecambe box caused early problems. Josef Yarney attempted to clear the danger but his ball only fell to Robbie Willmott, whose shot from the angle was saved superbly by Roche, only for the ball to loop Into the air invitingly for Amond to head home.
The home almost added a second on seven minutes. Dan Butler put in a cross for Antoine Semenyo to head goalwards only to see his effort tipped away by Roche.
After a sluggish start the Shrimps began to find some rhythm and had a great chance to level on 19 minutes when Vadaine Oliver played in Rhys Oates on goal. But the young striker saw his effort denied by Joe Day who raced from his line to save smartly.
It took a fine intervention by Newport defender Mark O’Brien to prevent Zak Mills’s cross from reaching Liam Mandeville, who was well placed on the edge of the Exiles’ area.
Newport hit back and were inches away from extending their lead after 35 minutes when Matty Dolan curled a 30-yard free-kick just wide.
The Exiles finished the half on top with Butler drawing a save from Roche again with a well struck shot from the left and then having a penalty appeal correctly waved away after hammering a cross into Mills’ hand from close-range.
The second half failed to reach the heights of the first.
Jordan Cranston tried his luck from 30 yards out with a powerful left-footed drive that worried Day as it curled just over the bar.
After the hour the home side forced a series of corners and went close to a second when Tyler Forbes unleashed a shot from the angle which was deflected past the post.
As the game progressed the Shrimps were looking desperately for a lifeline and it came when Ellison, so often the scourge of Newport, popped up at the death to make the most of Forbes’ slip to run on goal and shoot comfortably past Day.
Newport: Day, Pipe, Bennett (Forbes 20), O’Brien (Pring 45), Demetriou, Butler, Willmott, Dolan, Semenyo, Matt (Harris 78), Amond. Subs not used: Marsh-Brown, Sheehan, Townsend, Cooper.
Morecambe: Roche, Mills, Varney, Lavelle, Conlan, Mandeville ( rep Kenyon 81), Wildig, Cranston (Ellison 70), Oates (Oswell 70), Leitch-Smith, Oliver. Subs not used: Halstead, Hedley, Cuvelier, Piggott.