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Chasetown FC hit four without reply to sink Scarborough

Danny Bragoli tries to get away from his man. Pic: Dave Birt

Danny Bragoli tries to get away from his man. Pic: Dave Birt

It was a game that had everything – an own goal, penalties, red cards and a defensive howler – as Chasetown extended their unbeaten run.

If the deduction of four points due to the demise of Eastwood Town had dented The Scholars’ play-off hopes, they were not hanging around to lick their wounds.

Chasetown were quick out the traps though against a Scarborough side that had lost six points themselves and had slipped from one point to seven points off that final play-off berth.

Within a minute of the start, Nick Wellecomme had struck a long range effort a whisker wide of the angle of post and crossbar with Seadog goalkeeper Jason White a flat-footed spectator.

Visiting defender Peter Davidson was at the heart of the next close call, scooping the ball off the line after White had flapped at a corner.

Chris Bolder became the first player in the referee’s notebook with a challenge that led to the opening goal. Simon Brown floated in the resulting free kick and, under pressure from Wellecomme, Steven Ridley looped a header beyond his own goalkeeper to gift Chasetown the lead they so richly deserved.

Ryan Price was a virtual spectator at the other end of the field but was helpless to prevent what should have been a Scarborough equaliser. However, good fortune shone on the Scholars as Bolder’s effort came back off the upright and was cleared to safety.

Simon Brown makes it 2-0 from the penalty spot. Pic: Dave Birt

Simon Brown makes it 2-0 from the penalty spot. Pic: Dave Birt

Seven minutes into the second period came the daylight in the game that Chasetown had hoped for. Centre back Andrew Milne hacked down Jazz Luckie as he was clean through on goal with the referee brandishing a second yellow card to the Scarborough number four and reducing them to ten men.

Lee Butler’s curling free kick was well saved by White but the balance of play was most definitely in Chasetown’s favour and they were quick to capitalise.

Ramone Stephens replaced the injured Luckie and was quickly into the action bursting into the penalty area. Ridley, who had been booked only a minute earlier, brought down the Chase winger and completed a miserable afternoon for himself with a second yellow card and his team’s second red to add to his earlier own goal.

Simon Brown stepped up and confidently converted the spot kick to put the Scholars 2-0 to the good.

Debutant Jermaine Johnson earned Chasetown a second spot kick after Matthew Plummer inexplicably felt he could hold back the midfielder in full view of the referee and Brown slotted home his second spot-kick in five minutes in equally assured fashion.

Simon Brown on the ball. Pic: Dave Birt

Simon Brown on the ball. Pic: Dave Birt

Wellecomme was a strong candidate for man of the match and may have earned it but for a superb save from White, deflecting over a close range effort, before the pace of substitute Jono Gould created another chance for the striker but the chance had gone begging by the time he managed to sort his feet out and get a shot away.

If it was possible for Scarborough to press the self-destruct button any further, the fourth goal summed up their afternoon in defence. A Lee Butler corner seemed to be heading safely into the side-netting at the near post and Scarborough’s Liam Sheppard clearly thought the same as he dummied the ball as if to let it go out, looking back in horror as the ball curled inside the right-hand upright.

The only blot on the Scholars copybook came in the last throes of stoppage time. Gould was hacked down on the half way line in front of the two dug outs and saw red as he retaliated to the offending Scarborough player.

Chasetown: Price, Farmer, Beckett, Slater, Robinson, Johnson, Butler, Bragoli, Wellecomme, Luckie (Stephens, 55 mins), Brown (Gould, 83 mins). Subs not used: Evans, D Smith, Watson.
Scarborough Athletic: White, Middleton, Ridley, Milne, Plummer, Davidson (Beadle, 25 mins), Sheppard, Bolder (Blott, 68 mins), Hughes, Bradshaw (Barlow, 82 mins), Williams. Sub not used: Atkinson.

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