FOOTBALL: It’s six of the worst for Horncastle Town in cup final defeat

Horncastle Town's Andrew Shinn (left) slides in to tackle a Gainsborough Town opponent
Horncastle Town's Andrew Shinn (left) slides in to tackle a Gainsborough Town opponent

Horncastle Town 0

Gainsborough Town 6

Horncastle Town’s dreams of rounding off a frustrating season on a high were dashed by a ruthless Gainsborough Town side in the Supplementary Cup final at Lincoln last Saturday.

Town travelled to Ashby Avenue full of confidence after an impressive display in the last game of the their league campaign.

However, they never recovered from a nightmare start and although they were still in the contest at the break, Gainsborough rattled up five second half goals to show exactly why they had finished the Lincolnshire League campaign by winning eight games in a row.

Two absentees from Town’s squad were Danny Bent, who missed out through injury, and Michael Harness, who was unavailable.

Ollie Johnson was only fit enough for a place on the bench after returning from an ankle injury.

Town went behind after just 60 seconds when a cross from the right was headed into the bottom corner.

After 10 minutes, Town had a great chance to level the scores when Tony Edwards reached a through ball first and was fouled inside the box.

The referee awarded a penalty but decided the defender was not the last man and only showed him a yellow card.

Carl Smith stepped up to take the resulting spot-kick but the ball rebounded back off the cross bar and away to safety.

Five minutes later, the same defender who had been booked took out Gaz Melia with another bad challenge but the referee inexplicably declined to produce a second yellow card and let him off with a final warning.

Town were now growing into the game and were enjoying a lot of possession without really creating any clear cut chances.

The closest they came to an equaliser was when Melia sent in a cross that just avoided everyone at the far post.

The second half started with Gainsborough on the front foot and they doubled their lead in the 50th minute when their left winger found some space and his shot nestled in the bottom corner via a deflection.

The lead was extended to 3-0 on the hour mark when Steve Lovett looked to be fouled when he lost possession on the half way line, but the referee allowed play to continue and Gainsborough’s striker rounded ‘keeper Will Wood to finish.

Alec Enderby, Jamie Lamming and Callum Low came on to replace Dave Marshall, Steve Brown and Nathan Rawdon with 20 minutes to go.

Town kept pushing to try and find a consolation goal but left gaps at the back and Gainsborough scored three more times to clinch a flattering victory.

It was a very disappointing end to the season for Town but had some crucial decisions gone their way, the final outcome could have been very different.

Town: Wood, Rawdon (Low), Marshall (Enderby), C.Johnson, Shinn, Melia, Lovett, Brown (Lamming), Smith, Lowman, Edwards. Unused subs: O.Johnson, Burchnall.