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Kendal Town 1 - 1 South Shields
26/12/2017 - 15:00

Match Report

South Shields were forced to settle for a second successive draw after coming from behind at Kendal.

The table-topping Mariners fell behind early on, but Michael Richardson’s free-kick levelled things up on the stroke of half-time, with Shields defender Louis Storey claiming he got a touch.

Shields battled in the second half as they tried to find a winner, but found it difficult to break through on a testing pitch as their lead at the top of the Evo-Stik North Division was reduced to two points.

Lee Picton and Graham Fenton’s side let a two-goal lead slip as Trafford claimed a 2-2 draw at Mariners Park on Saturday, and they found themselves up against another set of plucky opponents at the ST&B Accountants Stadium.

Although the Mariners held much of the early possession, it was Kendal who had the game’s first chance, with Richard Seear shooting over from 20 yards after a Liam Connell pass went astray.

The hosts then took the lead on the quarter-hour mark after some impressive work down the left, and when the ball was played low into the box, midfielder Anthony Lynch did well to sweep it into the bottom corner.

Shields almost levelled things up within five minutes of that after a swift counter-attack, but Carl Finnigan’s effort went narrowly past the post after he was found by Gavin Cogdon.

Cogdon was a real danger to the home back-line, and he went close 10 minutes before half-time after the ball broke to him in the box, with goalkeeper Samuel Ashton doing well to hold onto his low shot.

The Mariners’ equaliser arrived in stoppage time as Richardson’s free-kick from the left appeared to take a deflection before squirming over the line, with Storey claiming he had the decisive touch.

After half-time, it was much of the same as both teams struggled to find any fluidity on a pitch which was becoming ever more difficult to play on.

Connell beat away an effort from Kendal forward Connor Gaul, while at the other end, Shields debutant Aksel Juul saw an effort saved.

The closest the Mariners came to finding a winner came as a ball forward fell the way of Cogdon, who fired a superb volley not far over.

Kendal possessed a threat too, and Daniel McGahon crashed an effort just over the crossbar from distance.

Jon Shaw was sent up front by the Mariners in the closing stages as they looked for a more threatening aerial threat, and it almost paid off as he headed a Matty Pattison cross narrowly over.

Pattison and Finnigan were denied by Ashton as the game ticked towards its conclusion, but Shields almost lost it in the final minute of stoppage time after losing possession just outside the penalty area.

Seear screwed his effort wide, though, as the Mariners came away with a point.

SOUTH SHIELDS: Connell, Baxter, Callaghan, Shaw, Storey, Arca (c), Richardson (Nicholson 82), Briggs (Pattison 32), Cogdon, Finnigan, Juul (Morse 71). Subs not used: Lough, Smith.

Goal: Richardson (45).

Attendance: 517.

WORDS: Daniel Prince. IMAGE: Kev Wilson.