Guiseley AFC: Captain’s example as Lions motor on

MOMENTUM: Guiseley and Wayne Brooksby kept up the good work by beating Vauxhall Motors.
MOMENTUM: Guiseley and Wayne Brooksby kept up the good work by beating Vauxhall Motors.
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Guiseley left it late to secure a 2-1 win against Vauxhall Motors which should have been wrapped up much sooner.

Captain Mark Bower, the former Bradford City skipper, was on hand to grab both goals from set pieces either side of a Tom Rutter equaliser for the Wirral-based side.

After a fairly slow opening 20 minutes, the Lions clicked into top gear and it seemed as though it wouldn’t be long before the hosts opened the scoring. Visiting keeper Zac Jones was on fine form, however, making two excellent saves from James Walshaw and Danny Boshell.

Just when it looked as though the sides would go in level, Bower headed expertly into the ground with the ball then bouncing up into the roof of the net.

The hosts’ dominance continued in the second half but they failed to score a second until very late on.

Josh Wilson had a host of chances while Walshaw hit the bar when it would have been easier to score.

Then, when a Vauxhall free-kick ricocheted to Rutter, he prodded home and it seemed as though Guiseley’s dominance would go unrewarded.

However, with the last attack of the game Rhys Meynell swung a ball in for Bower to attack excellently and grab all three points.

Lions boss Steve Kittrick was full of praise for Bower after the game, saying: “I think he’s been man of the match. Him and Danny Ellis have been outstanding. They’ve controlled it back there and done what they needed to do.

“We’ve just got to be a bit more clinical because their keeper has made two great saves, and if the woodwork is a bit kinder to us, we could be here having won 5-1.”

Elsewhere on Saturday, Bradford Park Avenue strengthened their pursuit of a play-off place with a 2-1 success at home to ten-men Bishop’s Stortford.

The visitors took a 33rd-minute lead through Blair Sturrick but just six minutes later Bishop’s were reduced to ten men as Matt Johnson was given his marching orders for picking up his second yellow card. Avenue soon made their numerical advantage count through a James Knowles equaliser a minute from half-time but John Deacey’s side had to wait until the 90th-minute before bagging a winner.

Matty James sprung to pounce on a loose ball in the box to fire into the bottom corner to give his side all three points.

There was almost time for a third when Tom Greaves played a low ball in the box but late substitute Jamie Jackson was just inches from guiding the ball into the net.

Avenue now sit seventh with boss John Deacey relieved to take all three points on Saturday.

“I thought we played okay for the first 30 minutes and then we lost our way a bit after that,” he said.

“The goal we conceded was a give-away goal again. Overall it was a battling performance and it’s always difficult against ten men.

“We are proving to be a difficult side to beat and we are definitely heading in the right direction.”

One place above Avenue are Neil Aspin’s FC Halifax Town who had to settle for a goalless draw at third-placed Brackley Town.

Boss Neil Aspin said: “I can’t fault the players for their attitude and their commitment.

“The main thing is that we haven’t lost and we’ve got a point.

“We have to see it as a point gained rather than a point lost.”

But Harrogate Town’s pitch problems continued on Saturday with their league hosting of Corby Town postponed.

The Harrogate side’s playing surface is still recovering from being waterlogged with Town due to host Hyde tomorrow evening in an FA Cup final qualifying round replay.

Victory would book Town a first round trip to League Two outfit Torquay United – a repeat of their first round clash at Plainmoor in November 2005.

Elsewhere tomorrow, Guisesley visit ninth-placed Altrincham in the league with Bradford Park Avenue travelling to sixth-bottom Colwyn Bay.

Kevan Hurst.

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