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Coasters Lead Cut Heading Into New Year

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AFC Fylde will begin 2017 on top of the Vanarama National League North table, but not with as big a lead as they could have had after going down to a 2-0 Boxing Day defeat at Mill Farm to a Chorley side who are now third.

A terrific crowd of 3,858 saw Jason Walker break Coasters hearts with a brace in the 44th and 47th minutes.

Dave Challinor`s side lead the table by six points after second-placed Kidderminster Harriers could only manage a goalless derby draw at Bromsgrove against Worcester City.

After overcoming a first half Harriers barrage, City grew in to the game, being unlucky not to take the lead in to the break.

The second half was a much more one sided affair with Harriers pushing City back on to the edge of their own penalty box. The game became even more of an uphill battle for City when Sam Oji was shown a straight red card on 55 minutes.

But on 77 minutes, Ryan Croasdale was shown a second yellow card for the visitors.

Darlington 1883 are now fourth after they edged out FC Halifax Town by the odd goal in five.

Playing back in the town at Blackwell Meadows after four and a half years as tenants at Bishop Auckland, the occasion drew a 3,000 attendance which saw Quakers begin a new era with a win.

Mark Beck gave the home side an early 7th minute lead that new Shaymen signing Adam Morgan cancelled out 6 minutes before the break.

Beck restored the Quakers lead 7 minutes after the break and Josh Gillies extended that to 3-1 just 3 minutes later.

Former Curzon Ashton striker Morgan bagged his second near the end, but the homecoming was to end in joy for the home fans.

Tamworth hold the final play-off spot, but they were beaten 2-1 at The Lamb by a Nuneaton Town side who are now six points clear of the drop zone.

Joe Ironside gave Boro a 15th minute lead that Ross Dyer cancelled out 10 minutes later.

Jordan Nicholson`s 24th minute second for the visitors proved to be the winner and a vital three points for Tommy Wright`s side.

Brackley Town show no signs of disappearing off the top five race and their 3-0 win against Gloucester City pushed the Saints to within a point of the Lambs.

Adam Walker scored the only first half goal at St James`s Park after 19 minutes.

Top scorer Steve Diggin eventually doubled the home side`s lead 15 minutes from time, with James Armson making sure with a third in the 84th minute.

Salford City are a point and a place further behind after Josh Hine`s late 85th minute effort proved enough to see off battling third-bottom Bradford Park Avenue at Moor Lane.

Salford`s neighbours, Stockport County, remain level on points with the Ammies after also winning 1-0 at the CNG Stadium against Harrogate Town.

Courtney Meppen-Walters scored the only goal for the Hatters after 69 minutes.

Two goals in the final quarter of the game gave FC United of Manchester a slightly flattering 3-0 win in the first-ever league clash against Altrincham at Moss Lane.

A crowd of 2,490 saw Tom Brown put the Reds in front after 21 minutes.

Jason Gilchrist added a second 17 minutes from time and then Tom Greaves added a third in the final minute to leave Alty fourteen points behind fourth-bottom Gainsborough Trinity going into 2017.

Trinity managed a point from their Lincolnshire derby at the Jakemans Stadium against Boston United.

A crowd of 1,602 saw Josh Robinson break the deadlock to give the Pilgrims a 56th minute lead.

But Ioan Evans rescued a point for Dom Roma`s side in the 68th minute.

Second-bottom Stalybridge Celtic lost their Tameside derby at Bower Fold to Curzon Ashton to leave them eleven points behind Trinity.

Celtic put in the effort, but two lapses in defence gave Curzon a two-goal half-time lead courtesy of Niall Cummins after 29 minutes and Jamie Stott 4 minutes later.

The woodwork and good goalkeeping meant those two goals were enough for Curzon to take the points in the first of the Festive double headers, despite Aidan Chippendale`s 57th minute reply.

AFC Telford United and Alfreton Town shared the Boxing Day spoils at the New Bucks Head.

The two teams hovering just above the drop zone, managed to keep in front of Gainsborough with Craig Westcarr`s 12th minute penalty for the Reds being cancelled out just past the hour-mark by Bradley Reid.


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