NFU 1 Nortwich Victoria 2

North Ferriby United 1-2 Northwich Victoria

Northwich prevailed in this tie between two playoff hopefuls, keeping their promotion hopes alive by coming away from North Ferriby with all three points.  All three of the game's goals came in the first half, with the visitors racing away into a two goal lead in the first half hour only to be pegged back by Alex Davidson's penalty on the stroke of half time, the result of an incident which saw Northwich reduced to ten men.

 

The away side took the lead with their first opportunity of the game after just four minutes.  Andy Fowler picked up a loose ball and burst into the Ferriby box to fire a low drive past Steve Wilson.  Northwich continued to enjoy the majority of play in the final third for the remainder of the opening half hour; Tony Evans had a goal disallowed for offside, and Fowler curled an effort just wide, before the advantage was doubled on 21 minutes.  After Wilson blocked Evans' initial shot, Ritchie Allen took control of the rebound and slotted home.  Ferriby came into the game late in the half, with Kevin Larvin and Steve Burton both coming close; and a potential turning point arrived just before half time when Northwich's Mike Byron was given a straight red card for pulling down Wayne Brooksby in the box.  Alex Davidson converted the penalty with the last kick of the half.

 

Ferriby sought to make the extra man count in the second period.  Northwich keeper James Spencer did well to beat Paul Foot to Alex Davidson's cross, and punch away a Russell Fry free kick.  Pedro Montero missed a golden opportunity to settle the points in Northwich's favour when he headed Mark Peers' cross against the bar; and at the other end Spencer made a crucial block from Paul Harsley.  Ferriby's best chances of a leveller came in the dying minutes, with Spencer turning Harsley's effort from Gary Bradshaw's through ball round the post, and Bradshaw himself lobbing a volleyed effort onto the roof of the net.

 

Man of the Match: James Spencer (Northwich)

 

Attendance: 268

 

Ferriby: Steve Wilson, Paul Harsley, Steve Burton (Ben Turner, 59), Sam Denton, Paul Foot (c), Peter Davidson, Russell Fry, Chris Bolder, Alex Davidson, Wayne Brooksby, Kevin Larvin (Gary Bradshaw, 65)  Subs not used: James Williams, Luke Thompson, Adam Nicklin

 

Northwich: James Spencer, Graeme Law, Louis Barnes, Dominic Collins, Mike Byron (c), Michael Roddy, Wayne Riley, Brian Summerskill (Raphael Evans, 74), Tony Evans, Ritchie Allen (Pedro Monteiro, HT), Andy Fowler (Mark Peers, 78)  Subs not used: Dave Fitzpatrick, John McAliskey