Burscough 3-2 Harrogate Railway: Late goals edge out Railway

Harrogate Railway defender Greg Kidd marks his man (Photo: Caught Light Photography)
Harrogate Railway defender Greg Kidd marks his man (Photo: Caught Light Photography)

Two goals inside the final ten minutes saw Harrogate Railway come away from Victoria Park empty handed on Saturday afternoon.

Railway went into half time with a 1-0 lead thanks to Stephen Bromley’s well taken opener before John Connolly levelled on 52 minutes, moments after Paul Williams had blazed a penalty over the bar.

Jack Stockdill then found the back of the net for Railway and ensured the visitors lead for the majority of the second half only for Liam Caddick and substitute John Conway to strike in the 82nd and 84th minute to complete a late turnaround.

Harrogate manager Lee Ashforth made five changes from last weekend’s defeat at Trafford; handing debuts to recent signings Rob Worrall and Louis Horne.

In a tentative opening few minutes, Greg Kidd made a good block to deny Burscough an early chance while Bromley almost latched onto Worrall’s clever through ball at the other end.

The first clear chance of the game fell to Nick Ryan after 18 minutes whose near post header from a corner was glanced over.

The Evo-Stik First Division North table

The Evo-Stik First Division North table

Kidd, making his first start of the season, then had more defending to do as he blocked Will Jones’ shot that deflected to Caddick only for Goodwin to dive to his right and deny the striker.

To their credit, Burscough were looking to pass the ball around rather than go direct, however, the approach proved costly and allowed Railway to take a 27th minute lead.

Worrall was quick to make a tackle after a loose pass 40 yards from Burscough’s goal resulting in Bromley picking up possession, charging towards goal and sending a left-footed shot into the bottom right corner.

Jordan Outerbridge then went close to extending Railway’s lead on two occasions moments later.

First the winger tried a speculative curling effort from the right which bent just past the goal, then Railway’s number 11 came close to capitalising on Ryan’s loose header, only for Sam Ramsbottom to charge out of goal and clear the danger.

With ten minutes to go until the break, Goodwin had to be alert to preserve his side’s lead as he saved Michael Monoghan’s shot with his knees as the midfielder raced through on goal.

The best chance of the half fell to Caddick seven minutes before the break as the striker received a cut back from the right, eight yards from goal, but scuffed his shot into the arms of Goodwin.

Five minutes into the second half and Burscough were given the chance to equalise from the spot after Horne had conceded a penalty, however, Williams stepped up and sent his shot high over the crossbar.

The hosts eventually found an equaliser two minutes later when Connolly played a neat one two to breach the Railway defence and finished at the second attempt after Goodwin had kept out the initial attempt.

It took the visitors just four minutes to restore their goal advantage, however, when Dan Thirkell’s 25 yard drive fell to the feet of Stockdill who remained composed and stroked the ball through the legs of Ramsbottom.

Burscough had a chance to equalise after 64 minutes after Nathaniel Pells had intercepted a cross only for the ball to fall to Monaghan a few yards out, but the midfielder tamely headed into the arms of Goodwin.

Railway were doing a good job of limiting Burscough’s chances, with the hosts desperate to equalise once again as Jones’ 30 yard shot produced a fine diving catch from Goodwin, while Pells continually put his body on the line to deny any clear cut opportunities.

The hosts eventually found a second equaliser of the afternoon after 82 minutes when Caddick was released in behind Railway’s back-line and slid his finish past Goodwin.

Burscough then completed the turnaround two minutes later when a combination of Goodwin and Rail defenders had denied the hosts, only for the ball to find substitute Conway unmarked at the back post to lift the ball into the net.

The game suddenly became very stop-start with Burscough determined to claim maximum points in a game they looked set to come out of empty handed with ten minutes to play.

Railway almost found an equaliser in the last action of the game when lively substitute Dan Barrett’s teasing cross was palmed away by Ramsbottom before the approaching Simon Parkes could apply the finishing touch.

A point could not be salvaged in the end, and Railway will now be looking ahead to next Saturday’s trip to Ossett Albion.

Harrogate Railway: Goodwin, Parkes, Kidd, Pells, Thirkell, Horne, Sharrocks, Stockdill, Bromley (Barrett 65), Worrall (Ibrahimi 60), Outerbridge (Clamp 72)

Subs not used: Brown, Wood

Goals: Bromley 26, Stockdill 56

Burscough: Ramsbottom, Camozzi (Joyce 57), Devine, Williams (Conway 66), Ryan, Brown, Monaghan, Toner, Jones, Caddick, Connolly (Jewell 83)

Subs not used: Gumbs, Hare

Goals: Connolly 52, Caddick 82, Conway 84

Booked: Conway 92

Referee: A. Bennett