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Coasters Maintain Six-Point Lead

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AFC Fylde maintained their six-point lead at the top of the Vanarama National League North table following a crucial 3-1 win at third-placed Chorley.

In front of a Chorley Group Victory Park Stadium crowd of 3,128, the first half was a tight affair with both sides cautions not to give anything away.

But virtually straight from the kick-off at the start of the second half, Chorley went ahead when Adam Blakeman calmly slotted past Rhys Taylor in the Fylde goal.

Just 5 minutes later though the Coasters were back on level terms when Brenon Daniels whipped in the corner and Dom Collins thumped a header into the bottom corner.

Then on 64 minutes, Fylde had the lead when a cross from Macauley Wilson found Dan Bradley who sent a perfect header into the top corner past Shaun Rowley.

A few minutes later though the teams were led off the pitch by the referee after Chorley striker Marcus Carver suffered a serious head injury that required an ambulance.

There was a delay of over 15 minutes before play started again, and not surprisingly, it took a while for the teams to recover.

The fourth official held the board up at the 90-minute mark and is showed a minimum of 16 minutes of stoppage time.

And in the 18th minute of time added on, the Coasters added a third when Danny Rowe and Bradley set-up Andy Bond for a tap-in.

In front of a New Year`s Day crowd of 2,762 at Aggborough, second-placed Kidderminster Harriers and Worcester City battled out an entertaining encounter which the home side just edged in the end.

City took the lead in the 23rd minute as Junior English found space in the Harriers box, firing low in to the bottom corner.

City held firm until the hour-mark when Harriers finally broke through with James McQuilkin the scorer at the back post.

The decider then came on the 79th minute as Sam Austin fired in a low cross from the right. Sam Oji stooped to try and clear but directed the ball towards his own goal, beating Ethan Ross down low to the left.

In front of a crowd of 2,511, a second half header by skipper Kevin Burgess gave fourth-placed Darlington 1883 a point at the Shay Stadium against ninth-placed FC Halifax Town.

The Shaymen took a 14th minute lead with another goal from new signing from Curzon Ashton, Adam Morgan.

Josh Gillies cleverly pulled the Quakers level 8 minutes later and they were denied the half-time lead by two good saves from Halifax`s new loan keeper Sam Johnson.

Halifax regained the lead through Adam Morgan — his fourth goal against Darlington this festive week — after 65 minutes, but Burgess equalised with a header 5 minutes later.

Salford City are now occupying fifth spot after a 2-0 win at the Horsfall Stadium against third-bottom Bradford Park Avenue.

It was James Poole who proved to be the Ammies` New Year`s Day hero.

He opened the scoring after 19 minutes and made sure the points crossed the Pennines with a second with less than 7 minutes remaining.

In-form Nuneaton Town made a winning start to 2017 as they completed the `double` over local rivals Tamworth at The Coombe Abbey Arena – a result that saw the Lambs drop out of the play-off places.

On a heavy surface, it was difficult to maintain the lively start as both teams cancelled each other out until Boro took the lead 6 minutes from the interval when Jordan Nicholson fired home with an effort that managed to find its way beyond James Belshaw.

The visitors came out with renewed vigour for the second half and Boro had to work hard and be resolute to keep them at bay as they searched for a leveller.

But a red card for visiting defender Luke Jones, who was dismissed for an off-the-ball incident, virtually ended their hopes of getting back into the game.

Stockport County’s run of victories, which had extended back to late November, came to an end at Edgeley Park against Harrogate Town.

In front of another terrific crowd of 3,725, having broken the deadlock through Michael Clarke just after the hour-mark, the Hatters looked good value for a sixth successive win in all competitions.

But, with just a minute of normal time remaining, goalkeeper Ben Hinchliffe allowed a pass back from distance by Gary Stopforth to roll under his foot, and could only watch in horror as the ball rolled into the back of his net to hand the visitors a point.

Bottom-markers Altrincham halted a run of eight successive league defeats with a point from a 1-1 draw against FC United of Manchester.

Altrincham took a deserved point at Broadhurst Park in front of a crowd of 3,030, despite the worst possible start.

They fell behind after just 38 seconds when Jason Gilchrist gave the hosts the lead.

But Altrincham settled and equalised in the 20th minute when Andy Owens, making his full debut for the club, netted after his first attempt had been blocked.

United had the better of the second half but Altrincham had their moments, too, but there was to be no further scoring.

The Lincolnshire derby between Gainsborough Trinity and Boston United at the Northolme ended with the visitors earning all three points to the one gained on Boxing Day in the reverse fixture.

But the Pilgrims had to come back from being a 20th minute penalty down, awarded for handball, and converted by James Reid.

However, it took less than 3 minutes for Jay Rollins to restore parity, netting his 9th goal of the season with a 25-yard drive.

It looked like being another stalemate, until Boston`s Josh Robinson grabbed a 90th minute winner from Callum Chippendale’s free-kick.

AFC Telford United have been pushed back towards trouble and are now only two points above fourth-bottom Gainsborough and four above the drop zone after losing 3-2 at the Impact Arena against Alfreton Town.

Mark Shelton have the Reds a 16th minute lead that Craig Westcarr doubled from the spot after 34 minutes.

Two minutes later, Josh Wilson pulled the Bucks back into the game – also from the spot – only for Paul Marshall to make it 3-1 with 2 minutes of the half remaining.

Wilson had the chance to reduce the deficit 3 minutes into the second half, but missed his second penalty.

John-Paul Kissock got his first goal for the Bucks a minute from time, but they weren’t able to find a leveller.


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