3 - 1Full Time
Poynton first team hosted Pilkington in a Cheshire league 6 pointer on Saturday with both teams locked on 21 points.
Poynton hoping to follow up on the big win at Egerton last week, named an unchanged starting 11. The substitute bench was made up of Challinor and O’Regan plus the returning Kennerley and Simpson.
The blustery conditions suggested a scrappy game awaited but credit to both teams who looked to get the ball down and play.
It was Pilkington who made the first breakthrough, a clearance from Wright was unlucky to rebound off a team mate and back into the path of the Pilkington left winger. The ball was quickly squared into the 6 yard box straight into the stride of the Pilkington forward who tapped home comfortably. 0-1.
Poynton reacted well to the setback, showing the fight and confidence to get back into the game. The game didn’t have to wait long to see the equaliser. A deep corner from Allen found Manson who towered above his marker to head home powerfully at the back post for his first goal of the season 1-1.
The game remained tight with both teams looking a threat on the break and it was inevitable that there would be more goals.
It was Poynton who edged in front as Allen and Mathers combined to release a through ball into the channel for McCurrie to run onto to hit an early shot from just inside the box across the Pilkington keeper and into the far bottom corner to score his second goal in his first 2 games for the club since his move from Congleton Vale. 2-1.
Pilkington pressed for a quick response and created a couple of their own chances the most clear cut when Poynton keeper, Ward brilliantly denied Matt Taylor one on one with his feet. A big save at an important part of the game.
HT: Poynton 2 Pilkington 1
The second half started with Poynton now playing into the wind but the pattern of the game was similar to the first half. The only difference was that Poynton managed to minimise the pressure from Pilkington on their back line.
Hurst introduced Kennerley to replace the tiring McCurrie in a straight swap and shortly after replaced Oakes with Challinor.
On 60 minutes, Pilkington had a bad 5 minute spell where their own discipline let them down. Forward Matt Taylor picked up two quick fire yellow cards to get his marching orders.
Poynton sensing a big opportunity, continued to get the ball down, always looking to play neat and tidy 2 touch football and the 3rd goal came from exactly that. Good combination play down the left from Kennerley and Allen allowed Quinn to hit a low hard cross which found Mathers who slid in to hammer home his 3rd goal in 3 starts for the club.
Poynton then looked to manage the game out using the extra player to their advantage. The Poynton back line of Wright, Garvey and Morris with Ward behind looked solid all game. And even when Pilkington introduced a physical threat, Poynton stood firm. An incredible goal line clearance from skipper, Wright in the last 10 minutes summed up the teams desire to shut out the opposition.
One final piece of bad discipline from Pilkington led to the right back being sent off after a daft high tackle on Quinn. But by now, the result was safe and it was clear sign of frustration from the Pilkington player.
Credit to Pilkington who played their part in a hard fought and good quality game but it was Poynton who clinched the points at the final whistle.
That’s 10 points from the last 4 league games, lifting Poynton to 3rd in the table just 3 points behind league leaders Billinge.