Bradley Wells fires Newark Flowserve to 4-3 win over EMCL title rivals Sheerwood Colliery
NEWARK FLOWSERVE moved seven points clear of East Midlands Counties League title rivals Sherwood Colliery with a 4-3 win at Debdale Park, reports TONY SMITH.
The third-placed hosts began the game with two matches in hand on The Highwaymen, though the Newarkers had a four-point advantage.
Flowserve fought back from behind twice to negate the two games in hand, and all eyes are now on Lowfields on December 29 when leaders Selston are the visitors in a potential championship decider.
The old adage of taking each game at a time will be the managerial mantra, and rightly so, but the travelling Flowserve faithful, who provided more than half of the attendance of 99, will have already altered their Christmas wish lists.
The orange and black script needed to be rewritten after just ten minutes when Sherwood went ahead.
Four had elapsed when free-scoring Tyrell Shannon-Lewis pulled up with a back spasm, and he was replaced after lengthy treatment.
Then Jack Warner muddied the waters still further when Flowserve keeper Joe Searson could only parry a shot and Warner pounced.
The visitors restored parity when a 17th minute corner was sent over from the left by Danny Meadows.
When it was cleared back out by the home defence, Meadows returned the ball with venom with a curling strike that bent into the far corner.
Just two minutes later The Wood were ahead again when Nathan Clarke was the first to the dropping ball after a free-kick on the left was only partially cleared and his half volley flew through a crowd of players and past the static Searson.
Leighton Nicholson, who put in a good shift after replacing the departed Shannon-Lewis, raised the hopes of the away supporters on the far side when his shot rippled the side-netting.
But on 27 minutes it was all square once again when Jack Beckett broke clear on the left and pulled the ball back for the league’s leading marksman Sam Agar, who had time to take a touch before steering home his 24th goal in 21 games while netting for the fourth successive game.
All the talk before the game had centred on the Wells brothers after their departure from AFC Mansfield.
Of the former Southwell City pair, Kieran had chosen Sherwood and Bradley had picked Flowserve.
It was Bradley who gave the visitors the lead for the first time in the game three minutes before the hour mark as his sweet left foot opened his Flowserve account, and the same man struck again six minutes later when left-back Will Rawdon put in a pin-point cross and Wells leapt unchallenged to steer his header into the far corner.
On 76 minutes a deflected shot from Kieran Wells brought an outstanding save from Searson as he dived to his right but, with two minutes of normal time remaining, Sherwood’s version of the Wells brothers made no mistake to pull it back to 4-3.
The referee, whose tendency to favour the home side resulted in six Flowserve bookings to two for the hosts in a game equally fiercely contested by the two combatants, found five minutes of stoppage time in the second period.
But Flowserve and their faithful fans were finally able to celebrate three points that could prove to be hugely significant in the final reckoning.
On Saturday The Highwaymen visit Stapleford Town in the third round of the Nottinghamshire Senior Cup.