Ruston Sports Reserves 1 Horncastle Town Reserves 1
Town’s Reserves moved off the bottom of the WJ Harrison Lincoln League after earning a hard fought draw at Ruston Sports last Saturday.
Skipper Scott Maplethorpe grabbed Town’s equaliser in the second half and they went on to miss a late chance through Ryan Gryniewicz that would have clinched all three points.
Player-manager Jamie Lamming went into the clash with a much changed squad as leading scorer Jack Baxter stepped up to the first team along with centre back Karl Porter.
Ryan Nunn, Alec Enderby, Will Carter, James Blondel, George Swift and goalkeeper Liam Smith were unavailable.
Gryniewicz and Andrew Bullivant returned and U18s captain Tom Watson and teammate Joe Wilkinson were called up.
The game was played on an artificial ‘3G’ surface and both sides took a while to get a foothold.
Ruston began to stretch Town’s defence and took the lead when their winger fired the ball past stand in ‘keeper Daryl Dunn.
The hosts went close to doubling their lead with five minutes of the half remaining, but a last ditch tackle from Callum Low rescued Town.
Town came out in the second half with more purpose and were determined to get a better service to their strike force of Burchnall and Cheetham.
Cheetham headed wide from a great position but it wasn’t long before Town did find the equaliser.
Bullivant curled in a precision cross from the left with his weaker right foot and Maplethorpe’s close range header at the back post found the target.
Town’s defence of Lamming, Maplethorpe, Watson and Low kept Ruston out with Watson, in particular, impressing.
With five minutes to go, Gryniewicz got onto the end of a long ball, but aware of the oncoming ‘keeper, his lobbed effort into the went just wide.
The point moved Horncastle above Saxilby Athletic in the league and off bottom, although they have a three week break until they play host to The Blues Club in the semi-final of the Amateur Cup.