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Former Pilgrim Matt Hocking gets on top of Froggatt

Southport 2-2 Pilgrims

Conference North

The last time that Boston United visited Haig Avenue was back in 2002 when they finished up as 3-2 victors in a crucial Conference match after being 2-0 down and scoring an equaliser and a winner in extra time. This game came within a whisker of repeating that famous result. The weather was the same wet and windy, Southport took a two goal lead, then Boston got one back midway through the second half before getting an equaliser on the stroke of time; and with the last kick of the game the ball was just wide of the target as history narrowly avoided a repetition. It was a game of two halves. Southport dominated the play in the first half and could easily have scored more than the two goals they got. Boston hardly had a chance worth mentioning. The opening goal came after just four minutes. Michael Rae chased a ball forward and just got to it ahead of his marker to cut the ball back into the path of Tony GRAY who picked his spot from eight yards out - into the bottom left corner giving Chris Wright no chance. Southport were creating lots of chances and seemed to be much more up for it, chasing loose balls, getting good crosses into the box and shooting at goal. But it wasn't until five minutes from half time that they increased their lead following a free-kick right on the edge of the penalty area. Mark DUFFY curled the kick around the wall and into the bottom right corner beyond Wright's dive.

Soon after the start of the second half Kieran Leabon came on for Jon Stevenson, but it was Southport who were still creating the best chances. A powerful shot by Michael Rae was pushed round the post by Wright and a header by Kevin Lee from the resulting corner was only inches wide. Boston then had their first decent attacking move of the game as they moved forward in numbers which resulted in Simon WEAVER pulling a goal back for Boston after Southport failed to clear a corner. Ashley Nicholls replaced Stewart Talbot and he was soon combining well with Leabon. The pair opened up the Southport defence but Nicholls shot was easily saved by Terry Smith. The increased Boston pressure eventually paid dividends at the end of normal time when an Ashley Nicholls corner was headed home by Simon WEAVER. Right at the death Boston won another corner, but this time history was not to repeat itself as the ball was headed just wide by substitute Mickey Nuttell.

Boston United: Chris Wright, Tom Matthews, Liam Green, Paul Ellender, Simon Weaver, Matt Bloomer, Stewart Talbot (Ashley Nicholls 60), Lee Thompson (Mickey Nuttell 80), Jon Stevenson (Kieran Leabon 53), Jon Froggatt, Jon Rowan. Subs not used: Tony Crane, Ben Joyce.

Match report and photograph copyright © Ken Fox 2008.