Lincolnshire Senior Trophy quarter-final - Stamford 1 Spalding United 0
For the second year in succession Spalding United went out to Stamford in the Lincolnshire Senior Trophy, beaten by a scrambled second-half goal, but they will rue a host of missed opportunities in the first period.
Many neutral supporters, one in particular from a higher level club, commented at half-time that the Tulips could and should have been at least three goals ahead of their opponents. And even home officials felt they were very fortunate to be still on level terms.
Playing good football the Tulips were certainly the more dominant side.
In the early stages a flowing right-side move saw Jack McGovern whip a defence-splitting ball into the Stamford area and finding Jordan Nuttell and Jordan Hempenstall challenging and only denied by a brave save at feet just short of the line by keeper Andy Stevens.
Within minutes Chris Hall’s 30-yard drive whistled inches over the bar with Stevens grasping at thin air.
Stamford’s first real threat on goal came on 25 minutes when Jordan Smith, in space at the far post, headed high over the bar.
Jamie Thurlbourne pinged some great balls in typical style from the left flank, one in particular picking out Andrew Tidswell who missed a great opportunity with the goal at his mercy. Shortly afterwards the Tulips’hit man failed again from another Thurlbourne assist.
The scoring chances ontinued to come and go without reward.
Michael Duggan kept his team in the hunt with a super save from Smith at point-blank range as the first half drew to a close.
Stamford snatched the lead on the hour with Lewis Carr slotting the ball home from close in on one of few occasions when the Tulips were under pressure – down to ten men with Hempenstall receiving treatment on the touchline and just after manager Pat Rayment had made a double substitution.
Much of the second half was nip and tuck with play mainly confined to midfield. With 20 minutes remaining Stevens made an excellent save to deny Tidswell.
Spalding: Duggan, Griffiths (sub Webb 52 mins), Jackson, Stevens, Leary, Nuttell (sub Clarke 64 mins), McGovern, Hall, Tidswell, Hempenstall (sub Waumsley 59 mins), Thurlbourne.