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Ram raiders leave Mossley high and dry
Friday 17th January 2014 @ 18:24 by Lisa B

The Ramsbottom club officials worked hard to get this match on at the Harry Williams Riverside Stadium on Saturday afternoon and they were rewarded with a healthy
attendance and a good game of football on a crisp winter’s afternoon.

The home side were on a run of just one defeat in their past 16 league games in contrast to the visitors’ single win in their last eight.

Perhaps understandably Rammy made the more confident start with Grant Spencer squaring the ball to Philip Dean, who blazed over.

Dean went a lot closer moments later, but it was unintentional as his deep cross almost crept in at the far post past Chris Thewlis.

After Spencer’s corner was headed over by Billy Priestley, the Rams finally took the lead in the ninth minute.

Lee Gaskell robbed the ball on the edge of the area and sent a delicate chip over the head of the stranded Thewlis, much to the delight of the home fans.

Three minutes later it was almost two as Spencer drew a fine save from Thewlis at full stretch. It wasn’t until the 26th minute that Mossley finally tested Grant Shenton in the home goal, but he easily dealt with Richard Bennett’s strike.

Back at the other end, Dean went close
before Gaskell called Thewlis into another fine stop.

The home side really should have gone into the break two up after Dean found himself free to the left of goal with only Thewlis to beat, but he sent his effort straight at the Mossley stopper and the chance went begging.

The Lilywhites started the second period showing more purpose with Matthew Tierney sending an effort over the bar.

In the 57th minute, Tom Pratt produced a 25 yard wonder strike that beat Shenton all ends up, but the Rams were saved by the goalpost as the ball bounced out to safety.

An equaliser was now looking on the cards and it arrived from a 65th minute corner.

Tierney’s header again struck the woodwork, but Bennett was on hand to bundle the ball home.

Mossley now looked the side more likely to go on and claim the three points as they enjoyed a spell of concerted pressure on the home defence, but just as the Rams looked to be fading, they came up with a 78th minute sucker punch.

Mossley failed to clear their lines properly and Jordan Hulme was on hand to drill the ball low through the crowded penalty area into the back of the net.

Substitute Chris Denham added to the home side’s tally with a rather fortunate mis-hit effort in the 83rd minute and Mossley were left to reflect on a game where they ran an in-form side pretty close, but ultimately still came home with nothing.

Mossley: Thewlis, Haslam, Drummond (Matthews), McGrath, Tierney (Carroll), McGonigle, Anderson, Nightingale, Wellbeck (Windsor), Bennett, Pratt.

Subs not used: McCarthy, Gallanders.

Attendance: 371.

by Dave Edler

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