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Anchors edged out by Tadcaster Albion

Stockton Town missed the chance to move a step closer to qualifying for the Northern Premier League East Division play-offs with defeat in a frantic encounter at Tadcaster Albion.

The Anchors fell behind within 90 seconds through Mark Ferguson but responded excellently through Shane Henry just two minutes later.

Adam Nicholson gave Stockton the lead midway through the first-half before the hosts struck twice in the space of three minutes just after half-time to earn a comeback victory.

Defeat, coupled with results elsewhere means Stockton are nine points inside the play-offs with four games remaining, meaning four more points from their final games would secure a play-off spot.

Michael Dunwell named three changes to the side which defeated Pontefract Collieries last week, with Callum Roberts returning to the starting line-up alongside Liam Cooke and Louie Hall.

It was Tadcaster who took the lead in just the second minute, Desmond Amponsah squirmed a shot through on goal which Ferguson converted from inside the six-yard box.

The Anchors immediately responded, Nathan Mulligan’s free-kick was flicked on by Henry into the far corner.

It was a frenetic opening 10 minutes to the encounter, with both sides looking dangerous in the early stages, Henry drove a shot at goal from just outside the area that was claimed by Harry Fisk.

Stockton took the lead after 24 minutes, Mulligan’s corner found the head of Nicholson, who’s effort was blocked and rebounded to Henry, who’s finish was deflected on its way by Nicholson.

Eddie Church should have equalised with 10 minutes to go in the half, his point blank header missed the target completely.

Callum Roberts produced a magnificent save to keep the Anchors ahead, Jack Carr’s curling strike was heading for the bottom corner until Roberts’ intervention.

There was time for late drama at the end of the first-half, Tadcaster seemed certain to equalise but for four brilliant goal-line blocks in quick succession before Tom Portas cleared the danger.

Callum Roberts was once again the hero early in the second half, with magnificent double save from the feet of Ferguson and Desmond Amponsah.

Tadcaster did equalise shortly after, Ferguson firing a free-kick into the corner of the net.

The hosts took the lead as Jack Carr slashed an effort in off the crossbar just two minutes later.

Stockton pushed to work their way back into fnd contest, with Liam Cooke’s free kick deflecting agonisingly wide before a big penalty shout after Tom Portas was felled in the penalty area.

Cooke was denied brilliantly late in stoppage time as his shot from the left hand side was tipped around the post by Fisk.

The Anchors return to home soil next weekend with the visit of Bridlington Town for the penultimate home game of the season.

Tadcaster Albion: Fisk, Howarth, Omolokun, Roper, Burton, Hartley, Carr (Chigumira, 87), Deacey, Church (Crook, 78), Ferguson, Amponsah

Subs Not Used: Hughes, Vieira, Chimalilo

Stockton Town: C.Roberts, King, Hall, Portas (D.Mulligan, 83), Nicholson, Coulthard, Cooke, Henry, Owens (Steel, 59), N.Mulligan (Franks, 59), M.Roberts

Subs Not Used: A.Conway, Bulmer

Goals: 1-0, 2 min, Ferguson; 1-1, 4 min, Henry; 1-2, 24 min, Nicholson; 2-2, 54 min, Ferguson; 3-2, 58 min, Carr

Referee: Luke Watson

Assistants: Joe Moss and Josh Bramby

Attendance: 292

Words: Jamie Beattie

Photo: Harry Cook

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CONTACT & ADDRESS

Stockton Town Football Club
Bishopton Road West,
Stockton-on-Tees
TS19 0QD
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