Colne suffered a narrow defeat at Leek on Saturday thanks to a controversial goal after 25 minutes. Although the Reds staged a spirited fight back in the second half, they were unable to break down a well organised Leek defence.
Colne started brightly and looked well organised at the back with Tom Fagan and Tom Hoyle making good clearances as the home side pushed forward in the opening minutes
And the Reds created a good chance after eight minutes when Enock Lusiama and Lucas Weaver combined to send Craig Carney on a run into the home penalty area and his angled shot was well saved by Leek keeper Danny Roberts at his near post.
As play switched to the other end, Leek defender Olly Harrison sent a header over the Colne goal from an inviting cross. And in the end-to-end play, Oli Roberts provided good crosses into the Leek penalty area looking for the head of Owen Watkinson and Lusiama.
But after 25 minutes, a controversial incident altered the course of the game when Leek’s Tom Carr hit a high diagonal cross from the right hand side of the penalty area which was headed against the post by Rob Stevenson and into the arms of Colne keeper Andre Mendes. But a raised flag by the assistant on the far touchline indicated that the ball had crossed line although there were no claims for a goal from the Leek forwards. And even though Colne hotly disputed the decision the referee awarded the goal.
Colne looked for a reply before the interval and Weaver forced a good save from Roberts with a goal-bound shot and Lusiama fired a powerful shot just over the bar of the Leek goal.
The Reds continued to attack in the second half and Weaver again saw a good shot well saved by Roberts after a good one-two in the build-up with Watkinson. After 50 minutes, Lusiama’s cross from the bye line struck the foot of the post before being cleared by the Leek defence. And in a subsequent attack, Carney fired just over the angle of the home goal from a good opening.
Counterattacks by Leek always looked dangerous but Mendes made good saves to keep out shots by Louis Keenan and Dan Trickett-Smith on the break.
In the closing stages, Colne stepped up the pressure with a series of good attacks and Roberts made a series of good saves in a crowded goalmouth. Deep into injury time, Lusiama’s free kick from 20 yards out was blocked by the defensive wall and the ball spun wide to Watkinson but defenders closed him down before he could slot the ball home. And as time ran out for the Reds, they were left to reflect on what might have been.