Skelmersdale United 2 Colne 1
Colne went down to a narrow defeat despite a good second half fight-back against Skelmersdale United on Saturday. The Reds conceded twice in the first half as the home side produced some fast attacking play which stretched the Colne defence on many occasions but they might well have salvaged a point after the interval but for an outstanding performance by the Skelmersdale keeper.
Colne started brightly and Craig Carney forced a good save by Skem keeper Joel Torrance after seven minutes. But five minutes later, a break down the left wing by the home side saw Danny O’Brien collect a cross to the right of goal and he forced Hakan Burton into a diving save to push his shot away but Finnan Croften followed up to knock home the loose ball from close range and give his side the lead.
Colne pressed forward looking for an equaliser and Carney’s 20 yard shot was pushed wide by a good save by Torrance. But as play switched to the other end, Elliot Morris rattled the Colne crossbar with a free kick from just outside the area.
Colne began to find gaps in the home defence and good work by Jake Forshaw released Luke Stowe in a one-on-one with the keeper but Torrance managed to deflect his shot just wide of the post. After 26 minutes, a Colne corner was played into the middle of the goalmouth and a home defender knocked the ball into his own net under pressure to level the scores at 1-1.
Skelmersdale responded with some good attacks and Burton did well when he clawed away Morris’ header from the top corner of his goal. But just three minutes after the equaliser, Morris restored the home side’s lead with a run down the left and a low diagonal shot into the far corner of the Colne net.
Colne emerged for the second half with a more determined attitude and began to create chances. Carney’s cross from the right found Stowe coming in from the left wing and his shot brought a great save from Torrance to push the ball away from the top corner of the goal. And as Colne continued to attack, further chances fell to Stowe who forced more good saves from Torrance.
Lucas Weaver joined the game from the subs bench to add more bite to the Colne attack and his shot from the edge of the area brought a great save from Torrance to push the ball over his crossbar. Owen Watkinson battled hard up front for Colne and saw his shot blocked by defenders after Carney had released him with a through ball into the penalty area.
The Reds kept up the pressure right to the final whistle but were unable to score a second goal mainly thanks to the outstanding performance of Joel Torrance in the Skelmersdale nets.