A goal either side of half-time gave Retford United victory in their local derby against Maltby Main on Saturday afternoon.
Badgers went close early on at the Jones and Co Stadium, as James O’Neill’s header brought a good save from the Main keeper.
Brian Cusworth tried to test Jody Barford, but the United stopper was able to make an easy save.
Jack Cross played the ball in finding Liam Wilkin who put the ball back across goal, where Craig Fisher shot on the turn but the keeper was down to smother the ball with Wilkin lurking.
Good work by Reece Thompson saw him play a ball into Wilkin, but he couldn’t quite get the touch he needed to steer the ball towards goal.
Retford were in control and the match was following a similar pattern to their last outing with plenty of chances but nothing to show for it.
Thompson played the ball through to Wilkin but his shot was over when he was in a good position with a defender challenging as he lined up the shot.
O’Neill found Lucas whose ball in was tipped over by the keeper, the resulting corner kick from Johnson was headed wide by Lucas.
Maltby had another couple of good chances, Cusworth get into the great position, his shot cleared by Andy Walkden, then Matt Bradley saw his chance blocked as he drilled the ball in from the right.
Further chances fell to Retford, Wilkin’s shot straight at the keeper, then Johnson firing over the bar.
The heroics of Jamie Bailey in the Maltby net continued as he did very well to turn Johnson’s effort away, but was helpless on the stroke of half-time as a run by Wilkin down the United left saw him cross in for Thompson to shoot home the opener.
The second half was only three minutes old when Cross was bundled over in the box, the referee having no heasitation as he pointed to the spot, with Wilkin stepping up for his 13th league goal of the season from the penalty.
Maltby won a free-kick, taken by Matthew Outram, but it was well saved by Barford.
Bradley found a way past the United defence and was only stopped by Fisher as he put the ball into the box.
Retford continued to pressure the Maltby defence, Thompson having further chances, one offside as he met Wilkins pass, then a shove in the box, a clear penalty was waved away by the referee.
As the game wore on, it became apparent where the points would go as Retford pressed further, Wilkin, Thompson and Fisher all having good chances, then Thompson again got the ball into a dangerous position, missing Wilkin by a whisker, the ball going out for a corner.
Fisher was unlucky as he went close from the resulting header.
Maltby had one last chance, but Barford was in the way, the game ending in victory for the Badgers and a valuable win to stop the recent winless run.
United travelled to AFC Emley on Tuesday evening for the League Cup, and face another away trip to Athersley Recreation on Saturday.