Squires Gate 4 Barnoldswick Town 2: Gate bounce back from midweek Trophy exit

An excellent team performance saw Squires Gate pick up three points with victory at the Brian Addison Stadium.

Sunday, 21st November 2021, 4:45 pm

Luke Evans made three changes from the side beaten in the Lancashire Challenge Trophy on Tuesday, bringing Jake Higham, Luke Holden and Sope Awe into the starting line up.

Chances were limited in the first 15 minutes as both sides battled well in the middle of the park.

The game took a turn in Gate’s favour though, with Barlick reduced to 10 men after Charlie Rowlands-Whiteoak’s strong challenge on Higham.

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Squires Gate claimed three points on Saturday Picture: Ian Moore

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With the extra man, Gate began to get on top as James Boyd was the first to test former Gate keeper Jordan Gidley with a strong effort that was well beaten away.

Higham looked threatening and again did well to beat his man before finding Chris Webster, who fired over from the edge of the box.

Dan Gray did likewise from distance and a tame Boyd effort was easily held by Gidley before Gate broke the deadlock on 38 minutes.

Higham did well again to drive at the Barlick defence before threading in Boyd, who squared the ball for Awe to slot into the bottom corner.

Gray again shot over from distance and, at the other end, Holden did well to block a header before Gate doubled their lead in added time.

A ball in from the right fell to Jack Iley who did well to turn and fire past Gidley, aided by a slight deflection.

Leading 2-0 at half-time, Gate had the perfect start to the second period when Iley grabbed his second goal of the game inside the first two minutes.

Awe did brilliantly to drive down the left before finding Iley, who slotted clinically into the bottom corner.

Just as the game looked out of sight, Barlick got a goal back on 49 minutes through Aaron Fleming.

A ball over the top was only half-cleared into the path of Fleming who fired brilliantly into the far corner, giving Mike Hale no chance.

Gate took control again with Gray sending an effort narrowly over, Boyd’s first-time attempt off target and Jonny Hothersall unable to make clean contact with a ball across the face of goal.

They did score again on 73 minutes when Higham was brought down inside the area and Boyd sent Gidley the wrong way from the spot.

Iley went close to grabbing his hat-trick, seeing an acrobatic effort well saved and a first-time attempt flying just off target, while Ryan Riley curled a shot just past the upright.

Barlick scored a late consolation on 88 minutes, Fleming grabbing his second with another clinical finish, but Gate saw out the game confidently.

Evans’ men are back in action on Tuesday night when they make the trip to Vauxhall Motors.

Squires Gate: Hale, Ridings, Higham, Gray, Holden, Westwood, Riley, Webster, Iley, Awe, Boyd. Subs: Abankwah, Mekkaoui-Abouzaid, Pollard, Hothersall, Rogers.

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