Padiham 1 Squires Gate 1: Boyd equaliser at the death seals second point for Gate

James Boyd’s equaliser in the dying seconds earned Gate a second point of the season in the North West Counties League premier division.

Sunday, 15th August 2021, 12:30 pm

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Ashton Athletic 0 Squires Gate 2: First-half goals give Gate FA Cup progress

Boosted by victory in the FA Cup at Ashton Athletic, Gate boss Luke Evans made one change for the trip to east Lancashire.

There was a full debut for Alex Welsh, coming into the back three to replace the injured Isaac Abankwah.

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James Boyd scores Gate's late equaliser

A scrappy start saw Gate get the first sight of goal on six minutes, with Dean Ing going close with a header after a good ball in from Ryan Riley.

Then, following a good save by Mike Hale to deny the hosts from a free-kick, Ing went close again with a difficult diving header.

It was real end to end stuff as Hale was forced into an excellent save after Gate failed to clear their lines.

Jacob Ridings then went close at the other end with a fierce drive from outside the area.

Padiham should have taken the lead on 35 minutes, when another mix-up at the back saw the ball drop kindly for the home side but the shot flew over with the goal unguarded.

After the goalless first half, the second period started quietly until Padiham won a penalty on 56 minutes after a collision inside the penalty area.

Isaac Jones stepped up and sent Hale the wrong way with a good spot-kick.

Gate looked to keep things fresh and introduced Jack Iley and Ollie Burgess for Ing and Josh Pollard on the hour mark.

Evans’ men began to keep more of the ball and threaten Padiham a lot more, especially down the left.

A free-kick in a great position was blazed over the bar by Riley on 72 minutes, though Gate had to wait until the 90th for their best chance.

A ball in from Boyd trickled into Iley’s path but his shot was driven straight at the keeper, with Feeney firing over the rebound from outside the box.

Seven minutes were then added on after some excessive time-wasting as well as injuries.

Padiham should have wrapped up the three points deep into the time added-on, when their striker rounded keeper Hale only to hit a post from close-range.

The hosts were made to rue their missed chances as Gate snatched an equaliser with virtually the last kick of the game.

Boyd latched on to a loose ball on the edge of the box, burst though on goal and finished smartly.

It was a first point of the season for Padiham and a valuable one on the road for Evans’ men, who seek their first league win at home to Burscough on Tuesday.

Gate: Hale, Ridings, Riley, Welsh, Bartram, Westwood, Pollard, Webster, Feeney, Ing, Boyd; Subs: Garrett, Holden, Burgess, Mekkaoui-Abouzaid, Iley

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