Cleethorpes Town Res 3 Horncastle Town 0
Horncastle Town were left feeling all at sea after their trip to the coast on Saturday led to a defeat in their penultimate Sills and Betteridge Premier Division game of the season.
Needing a win to leap above Cleethorpes in the table, Town had the lion’s share of possession but couldn’t produce any good chances to trouble the a young home ‘keeper.
At the other end, two mistakes and a miss-hit strike made sure the points stayed on the coast.
Town welcomed Steve Lovett and Nathan Rawdon while new signing John Rawdon started on the bench alongside Jamie Lamming and Ben Johnson.
Boss Paul Johnson was without Olly Johnson and Danny Bent, who were injured, while striker Tony Edwards was unavailable.
Town started the game well and the midfield quartet of Lovett, Scott Lowman, Carl Smith and Steve Brown saw plenty of the ball.
Lowman had a promising strike blocked by a defender and a 30-yard free kick from the same player found its way into the ‘keeper’s arms.
After 20 minutes, Cleethorpes went ahead when a corner kick was missed by three Town defenders and left a simple finish at the back post for an unmarked opponent.
On 35 minutes, the lead was doubled when Dave Marshall miss-controlled a bouncing ball and Cleethorpe’s striker set up his partner who found the bottom corner, giving Will Wood in the Town goal no chance.
The second half started like the first with Town enjoying a lot of possession, but the front two of Michael Harness and Gareth Melia were getting little or no joy.
The closest Town came was a 25-yard strike from Melia, which just grazed the angle of crossbar and post.
As Town pushed forward for a goal, they were always short at the back and Cleethorpes wrapped up the win with 20 minutes to go.
A cross came in and although a home player miss-hit his volley, it evaded everyone - including Wood - to find the back of the net via the post.
John Rawdon, Lamming and Ben Johnson came on to replace Harness, Lovett and Nathan Rawdon to try and get a consolation.
Lamming came the closest in the last minute of the game when his lobbed shot was tipped over by the Cleethorpes ‘keeper.
It was a very disappointing result for Town who once again paid the price for a lack of a cutting edge in attack.
They travel to York Street to play Boston United Reserves for their last league game of the season next Saturday and then have a week’s break before the Supplementary Cup final against Gainsborough.
Town : Wood; N Rawdon (B Johnson), C Johnson (capt), Marshall, Shinn; Lowman, Lovett (J Rawdon), Smith, Brown; Melia, Harness (Lamming).