7:20am Tuesday 29th April 2014
By Craig Nelson
TEMPEST United assistant manager Gary Westhead is praying neighbours Eagley can come to their rescue after his side finished their season with a frustrating 1-1 draw at home to Crooklands Casuals.
Ben Hide put Tempest ahead in the 30th minute from a Sean Rothwell corner, but the home side gave away a needless penalty five minutes later and could not get their noses back in front.
The result left them one place and one point outside the Premier Division relegation places after finishing their league programme.
The bottom two sides – Vickerstown and Norcoss & Warbreck - both have two games remaining.
Two points for basement club Norcross would see them finish above Tempest, while Vickerstown only need one point to leapfrog them.
“We really needed to win on Saturday to give ourselves a chance, but Vickerstown’s next match is against Eagley so hopefully they will do us a favour for a change,” joked Westhead.
“It was bad communication from us to give a sloppy penalty away after taking the lead, but we really couldn’t have done any more to force the win.
“I would say every player had a chance to score in the final 20 minutes. We hit the bar and the post and even our goalkeeper, Craig Tebay, had a good header saved.
“If we do go down, it won’t be because of this result. We had to rebuild the squad in the summer and it took them time for the new players to gel. We went eight games without a win or even a goal from September to November. It is easy to say now, but if we could have just picked up a few points during that run then we wouldn’t be in this situation.”
Eagley will go into the game at Vickerstown on Saturday on the back of a 4-4 draw at Thornton Cleveleys.
Goals from Heath Ainscow, Josh Lee and Nick Haynes, plus an own goal, were cancelled out by a hat-trick for the home side’s Jason Rawcliffe and a strike from Phil Smith.
The point ensured Simon Howarth’s side stay fifth with two games remaining.
In the First Division, an under-strength Turton side fell to a shock 3-0 defeat at bottom club Millom, who picked up only their second victory at home all season.
Manager Neil Johnson admitted resting a number of key players ahead of last night’s Hospital Cup semi-final against Hindsford, but said Millom fully deserved their win, despite a number of debatable refereeing decisions.
Bolton County also rested key players for their trip to Lytham Town ahead of tomorrow night’s Kenyon Cup final against Walshaw Sports at Bury’s JD Stadium.
Despite fielding a number of youngsters, Henry Chapman’s sixth-placed side opened the scoring with a Liam Short header but went on to concede four before Liam Stewart bagged a late consolation goal to make it 4-2.
CMB striker Michael McGinley continued his recent fine run of form, scoring twice in the second half in their 2-0 win at Furness Cavaliers.
The victory moved the Lostock side up to seventh in Division Two with one game remaining and ended their fifth-placed hosts’ chances of promotion.
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