GUISELEY manager Mark Bower was left to hail a top-notch start by the Lions, who claimed the derby bragging rights after beating Harrogate Town 4-2 at Nethermoor Park in an enthralling Vanarama North encounter.
Goals in the first 18 minutes from Jake Lawlor and Oli Johnson put the high-flying Lions firmly in the box seat and strikes from Nicky Boshell and Gavin Rothery in the second half made it 4-2.
Simon Weaver’s Town, who have a wretched record against Guiseley in recent years, pulled goals back to salvage a little bit of pride courtesy of Jake Speight and Jordan Thewlis, but it was Guiseley’s s day
Satisfied with the efforts of his side, Bower said: “We played well and I was pleased that we were able to get the goals early.”
On the other hand, the defeat left Bower’s counterpart Weaver somewhat frustrated.
The Town boss said: “We took positives from the last few games, but the first 60 minutes was disappointing. The last 30 were a lot better for us.”
Unlike the previous match on Boxing Day which ended goalless at the CNG Stadium, it took just 10 minutes for a goal to go in.
The home side took the lead with Wayne Brooksby crossing the ball into the area but despite Peter Crook saving from Alex Johnson and Oli Johnson, the ball fell to Lawlor, who tapped Guiseley ahead and provided the perfect start for the Lions on 11 minutes.
It was soon two to Guiseley when Danny Lowe passed a through-ball that split the Harrogate defence open, with Oli Johnson calmly placing the ball past Peter Crook.
Harrogate thought they had halved the deficit when Clayton flicked the ball past Steven Drench and into the goal, but the offside flag went up.
The half ended with Drench saving from former Guiseley striker James Walshaw, but the home side were rightly in the lead at half-time. While the start of the second half saw Harrogate try to get back into the game, it was Guiseley who got a third.
Nicky Boshell scored with a great header as he connected with a ball that was aimed just behind him.
Then some good team play saw Gavin Rothery finish the move off to make it four for Guiseley.
This led to Weaver making two changes with Jake Speight and Jordan Thewlis coming on for Harrogate and within five minutes both had scored.
First, Speight headed in from close range then Thewlis showed good composure to score as well.
The Town goals put some respectability on the scoreline after being outplayed and second best for the first hour of proceedings at Nethermoor when the hosts were dominant.
The last 10 minutes saw Town nearly get a third when a goalmouth scramble didn’t go their way.
Guiseley could have made it five when Nicky Boshell missed a chance from three yards out, as the game ended 4-2.
Bradford Park Avenue’s home game with Chorley was postponed because of severe waterlogging in one area of the pitch at the Horsfall Stadium.
Supporters and club officials worked tirelessly all week in an attempt to get the game on, but the match referee declared the pitch unfit in a 10.30am inspection yesterday morning.
This means that Avenue’s next home game is not until the rearranged clash against Gloucester City on Wednesday January 14.
A BARNSTORMING second half saw Farsley AFC turn the tables on derby rivals Harrogate Railway to record a thrilling 4-2 victory at Throstle Nest.
The win saw Farsley leapfrog Rail in the Evo-Stik First Division North table and inflicted a rare defeat on Billy Miller’s side, who had enjoyed a fine winter run to the end of 2014.
Farsley, who lost 1-0 in their last game, at Brighouse on Boxing Day, fell behind midway through the first period when Mike Morris netted.
Robbie Youhill, after running from the halfway line, doubled their tally before the break ahead of Andy Welsh pulling one back after a defensive mix-up shortly after the restart, with his first goal for the club.
Adam Priestley drew Neil Parsley’s side level on 66 minutes and five minutes later, Lewis Nightingale put the hosts in front for the first time to make it 3-2. Aidan Savory added a late fourth to put the seal on a powerhouse second-half showing.
Ossett Albion made it two wins in a row with a 3-2 home victory over struggling New Mills.
Adam Jones hit the winner for Albion after the Millers had levelled twice through Dorya Ahmadi and Daniel Douglas-Pringle.
Other home scorers were Connor Bower and Adam Muller.
Brighouse Town were humbled 4-0 at Scarborough Athletic.
Ryan Hall compounded a bad day for the visitors by missing a late penalty. Marksmen for the Seadogs, who struck twice in each half, were Gary Bradshaw, Alex Peterson, James Ghaichem and Jimmy Beadle.
Ossett Town suffered another 3-0 holiday defeat after going down at Spennymoor.
On the mark for the home side at Brewery Field were Liam Henderson, Shane Henry and Kallum Griffiths, the latter netting with an eye-catching 30-yarder.
Meanwhile, action in the Premier Division saw Karl Rose’s Frickley Athletic take away a point in a 1-1 draw at Grantham Town.
The Blues went ahead on 56 minutes through Luke Hinsley.
But the Gingerbreads equalised 11 minutes later through Michael Emmott.
A late leveller earned a share of the spoils for Goole AFC in a 1-1 draw with Lincoln United.
The visitors took the lead through Matt Cotton, but the Vikings secured a point with a goal five minutes from time from Bill Law.