ATHERTON Collieries recorded their second successive clean sheet on Monday night as they saw off tenants Oldham Boro at Alder House.
The result sees Steve Pilling’s side hold on to third position in the North West Counties League Division One; level on points with second-placed Formby having played a game more.
The pitch held up very well given recent weather conditions, and this allowed Atherton to settle into a passing rhythm from the early stages.
Joey Evans made his debut for Colls after returning from Prescot Cables having had two seasons away from NWCFL action.
Evans played a pivotal role in the midfield battle which ensued as both sides looked to gain a firm advantage.
Colls took a deserved lead on 20 minutes when Daryl Patton finished off an exquisite move which began in their own defensive third.
Kieran Halliwell dinked a ball into Patton, who played a neat one-two with Evans before lobbing the advancing goalkeeper from just inside the area.
Mitchell Leece was combative throughout the evening and he grabbed a goal on 60 minutes when he drilled the ball into the net with the outside of his foot from a tight angle.
Oldham had a couple of chances to pull a goal back, but goalkeeper Phil Priestley continued to impress since his introduction to the squad as Colls claimed their third clean sheet in a row; the first time this has happened since last March.
Elsewhere, Daisy Hill managed to claim a point at home to Chadderton on Saturday.
The result sees Daisy open up a seven-point gap over the bottom two sides, Eccleshall and Northwich Flixton Villa.