Tigers came away with a hard fought victory after overcoming a determined Parkgate 2-1 to keep up their recent run of form.
It wasn’t the prettiest game, lacking much quality, but goals from Julian Lawrence and substitute Adam Scott earnt three more points as Mark Shaw’s men continued their climb up the table with their fourth win in a row.
Neither keeper was tested in the early stages, but Tigers certainly dominated possession with Parkgate seemingly happy to sit back and try to play on the break.
Parkgate then created their first chance of the game when Josh Moore beat the offside trap and found himself one on one with Jon Kennedy, but the Tigers captain did well to block his effort.
The opening goal came on 29 mins, as Dawes this time got his delivery from a corner right. His ball in from the left was flicked on at the near post and there was Lawrence to sidefoot home the opener from close range.
At the start of the second half things starting getting a little feisty, with Parkgate’s Moore somehow getting away with a head-butt on Richard Adams as the referee only showed a yellow card after consulting his linesman.
More niggly challenges and off the ball stuff followed, as the referee failed to get on top of the game resulting in a stop start match. Mitch Husbands ambitious strike from 25 yards over the bar the only chance of note during the early exchanges of the second half.
Parkgate were certainly not out of the game, looking dangerous on the break and forcing a fantastic low save from Kennedy when the ball looked certain for the net.
Ashley Emmett then almost levelled with a fluke goal. He fizzed in a fantastic freekick that two Parkgate players couldn’t quite connect with, and Kennedy once again proved alert to push the ball away.
Moore, who was constantly in the action, got in behind Tigers at the back post after some sloppy defending, but he somehow fired over when it was easier to score. A huge let off for the visitors.
The home side had been pushing for a leveller, Emmett consistently whipping in dangerous balls all evening that his teammates couldn’t quite finish. It was from one of these crosses Parkgate found an equaliser. A corner on the left is headed home by Jassim Alali on 83 minutes sparking celebrations from the home side.
However, the celebrations were cut short as immediately Tigers struck back. Substitute Adam Scott grabbing the winning goal after dancing around a couple of defenders and firing home off the underside of crossbar.
There were then some handbags between both sets of players, as another rough challenge sparked a reaction. In all honesty you could see it coming, as the referee seemed to be letting some pretty blatant fouls go. This time Connor Brunt seemed to be thrown to the floor by his throat, not the first time it had happened in the game, but the wrestling move apparently didn’t warrant a card.
After play restarted Tigers successfully played out the final few minutes, to earn a valuable 2-1 win. It might not have been pretty but it was a great result as they made it four wins in a row.
Tigers: KENNEDY 8, Hawkins 7, Andrews 6, Lawrence 7 (Scott), Adams 6, Fenton 6, Dawes 6 (Harrison), Waddle 6, Brunt 6, Husbands 6 (Fusco), Booth 6.
Subs not used: Johnson, Loftus
Parkgate: Lill, McGowan, Simpkins, Yates, Alali, Higgins, B. Thornton, Emmett, Moore, Harris, Mumbanya.
Subs: Cuckson, Nicolson, Wesley, Mason, S. Thornton
Yellows: Hawkins, Waddle, Lawrence, Booth; Moore.
Goals: Lawrence 29, Scott 84; Alali 83.