Blow to play-off chances

Buxton FC v Fleetwood, Mark Reed
Buxton FC v Fleetwood, Mark Reed

Evo-Stik Premier Division

Northwich Victoria 4

Buxton 2

MONDAY evening proved very special for Mark Reed as his goal made him the club’s all-time leading scorer with 190 but the defeat, the second in three days, proved another setback in Buxton’s quest to feature in the promotion play-offs.

The game offered outstanding entertainment and on a well-grassed, if hard, pitch there was an abundance of good passing soccer and goal-mouth action.

In possession the Bucks played well, but made mistakes in their own half.

The visitors had early chances as Lugden’s low cross shot was palmed away by keeper Spencer but just behind the on rushing Reed, and Ridley’s curling, 20-yard free kick narrowly missed the target.

Yet after 18 minutes Vics led through Clarke, who touched home a long throw by Crewe loanee Short. Buxton responded immediately with Liversidge seeing a powerful low drive saved by Spencer’s legs but within five minutes a typical Reed goal brought the teams level.

A delightful through ball from Michael Towey sent him clear and his sprint was followed by a calm, confident low shot.

Northwich goals either side of half-time proved decisive. After 41 minutes, Clarke got in a looping header to a midfield free kick, catching Hartley marginally off his line, then three minutes into the second period home striker Andy Fowler scored a superb goal, beating two defenders before firing high into the net from 18 yards. Worse was to follow just past the hour.

A Towey error allowed Riley to race away and net confidently, but within two minutes the midfielder had compensated with a mazy run into the Northwich area, leaving Lugsden with an easy tap-in.

Buxton: Hartley, Black, Liversidge, Agus, Wilde, Stevens (Ovington 76), Towey, Maxfield, Ridley, Reed, Lugsden (Johnson 72). Other subs: Askey, Kirkland, Maguire. Att: 303.