Evo-Stik First Division North
Prescot Cables 1, New Mills 2
New Mills made it six league wins from seven on their travels with a hard-earned three points at Prescot on Saturday.
The Millers had what looked like a worthwhile shout for a penalty in the 13th minute when Ged Murphy made a complete hash of a clearance and the ball appeared to strike his arm in the aftermath but referee Mr Mycock decreed that the infringement wasn’t deliberate.
Another defensive error handed New Mills the lead seven minutes later when Murphy’s colleague Chris Rimmer shanked an attempted aerial pass.
The ball looped high up into the air from where Chris Luby outjumped debutant keeper Gary Spotswood and the striker was alert enough to roll the resulting loose ball into the unguarded net.
The lively Luby scored his second of the afternoon five minutes before the interval when his determination paid dividends again.
With time and space available down the right-hand flank, Leon Grandison’s chip-cum-cross beat the rapidly advancing keeper Spotswood.
As the ball bounced across the six-yard box, Luby looked second favourite to get to the ball but despite being outnumbered, his desire saw him somehow nip in front of the defenders to prod home from an acute angle.
That two-goal advantage was halved almost immediately when Andrew Mills, who had barely been troubled, misjudged a deep swirling cross and as the ball rebounded off the post, Prescot’s Jonathon Bathurst couldn’t believe his luck as he capitalised on the rebound from close range.
The playing conditions worsened in the second half as the wind and rain picked up meaning that the game turned into an attritional midfield battle. Bathurst acrobatically volleyed a deep cross wide of Mills’ goal but as the game progressed, both sides struggled to create any significant goalscoring opportunities.
Workmanlike Cables had the lion’s share of territorial possession and exerted some concerted late pressure on New Mills’ goal but the defensive line stood strong and ensured that the three precious points were heading to the High Peak.
New Mills: Mills, Bowler, Fitzpatrick, Grimshaw (Weston), Meakin, Egerton, Grandison (Fish), Young, Luby (Hampson), Douglas-Pringle, Innes. Unused substitutes: Burgess, Walton.