Frickley Athletic 1 Eastwood Town 0
A last minute own goal from Romaine Graham saw Eastwood fall to Frickley in what transpired to be John Ramshaw’s last game in charge of The Badgers.
Graham’s horribly mis-hit clearance 35 yards from his own goal inadvertently lobbed debutant goalkeeper Rikki Turner, consigning the Badgers to a defeat that was harsh on them after playing well throughout.
Eastwood enjoyed the better of the opening half and went close through TJ Nightingale in only the third minute but his volley on the turn went wide of the right hand post from 20 yards.
It wasn’t long before Indy Aujla put a 25-yard shot wide of the target a minute later as the Blues threatened for the first time before Eastwood were back on the attack and had a corner headed off the line and then a 25 yard shot from Gregg Simmons go just wide.
Eastwood had been well on top early in the game but the second half was one of few chances, the best falling to Frickley’s Luke Hinsley who should have done better on 47 minutes when he was sent clear but he fired wide of the right hand post when under pressure.
The game itself turned out to be a scrappy affair, not helped by some dubious refereeing desicions including the sending off of Frickley’s Jimmy Ghaichem after 75 minutes for a second bookable offence.
Frickley hadn’t offered too much going forward before Matty Bloor saw a header cleared off the line on 89 minutes.
But if ever a goal was to sum up Eastwood’s current predicament, and indeed the year-long reign of their outgoing manager, it was the last-gasp winner.
Frickley goalkeeper Tom Woodhead launched a clearance into the Eastwood half, and as it fell to Graham he attempted to volley the ball back from whence it came.
Instead, it sliced horribly off his right foot and over Turner who was off his line, before rolling apologetically over the line for the winning goal.
Frickley: 1 Tom Woodhead 2 Terry Barwick 3 Lee Stratford (Eddie Hague 63) 4 Indy Aujla 5 Jake Picton 6 David Buck 7 Jason Yates 8 Matty Bloor 9 Gavin Allott 10 Luke Hinsley 11 Jimmy Ghaichem. Subs not used: Chris Wood, Henry Sibenge, Reece Fennell, Zack Levers Scorer: Graham 90og Eastwood: 1 Rikki Turner 2 Jake Green 3 Chris Shaw (c) 4 Danny Elliott 5 Romaine Graham 6 Mitch Hanson (Travis Munn 65) 7 Gregg Simmons 8 Alex Troke 9 TJ Nightingale 10 Matt Harris 11 Paolo Piliero. Subs not used: Reagan Marriott, Vijay Selvam Att: 153
Ref: A Marshall
Best Badger: Gregg Simmons