Evo-Stik Southern Premier Central
Stratford Town 0-2 King’s Lynn Town
Report by Craig Gibbons
STRATFORD Town’s four-game unbeaten run in the Evo-Stik Southern Premier Central came to end at the Arden Garages Stadium in a 2-0 defeat to fellow play-off hopefuls King’s Lynn Town.
A goal in each half from hot-shot Adam Marriott and man-of-the-match Michael Gash secured the win for the Linnets to further boost their chances of finishing third in the league standings.
Town’s head of football Thomas Baillie stuck with the same team for the third consecutive game, but his side fell behind after just three minutes when Ross Barrows’ long ball was flicked on by Michael Gash into the path of star striker Marriott who slotted through the legs of Laurence Bilboe to notch his 18th goal of the season
Despite their slow start, Town grew into the game and their first chance came ten minutes later, but Chris Cox could only shoot straight at Linnets keeper Alexander Street after cutting inside onto his left foot.
Will Grocott missed a golden opportunity to bring the hosts level with ten minutes of the first half remaining, but he could only skew wide from six yards out from Wilson Carvalho’s cut back before a stunning save from Street at his near post denied Nabil Shariff from restoring parity three minutes later.
King’s Lynn were always looking dangerous on the break and they came agonisingly close to doubling their lead moments before the interval when Barrows surged his way into the box, but his shot deflected through the legs of Bilboe and just wide of the near post.
Ten minutes into the second period Town came within a whisker of making it 1-1, but Carvalho’s dipping and swerving shot from 25 yards out hit the side netting.
A Carvalho mistake almost allowed the Linnets to double their lead with 22 minutes remaining, but Michael Clunnan could only lash over from 20 yards out.
Jordan Richards was the next to try his luck from distance just moments later, but Bilboe was equal to the effort.
Town came so close to getting back on level terms with just 15 minutes to go, but Ryan Fryatt was well placed on the line to block Shariff’s effort from going in after the initial shot from substitute Dan Creaney was blocked by Street.
Despite dominating much of the second period, Town fell 2-0 behind in the 87th minute when man-of-the-match Gash beautifully curled home into the bottom right-hand corner from the edge of the area.
TOWN: Laurence Bilboe, Chris Cox, Cody Fisher (Kynan Isaac 82), James Fry, Lewis Wilson, Jordan Williams, Nabil Shariff, Albi Skendi, Mike Taylor, Will Grocott (Dan Creaney 72), Wilson Carvalho. Unused subs: Mo Sebbeh-Njie, Ross Etheridge, Tom Fishwick.
KING’S LYNN: Alexander Street, Ross Barrows, Frazer Blake-Tracy, Ryan Jarvis, Ryan Fryatt, Rory McAuley, Michael Clunnan, Jordan Richards, Michael Gash, Adam Marriott (William Mellors-Blair 89), Christopher Henderson (Ryan Hawkins 54). Unused subs: Craig Parker, Harry Limb, Paul Bastock.