Evo-Stik Premier Division
Buxton 1, AFC Fylde 0
A 94TH-MINUTE Mark Reed penalty gave Buxton FC a narrow 1-0 victory over visiting AFC Fylde.
This entertaining encounter at the Silverlands on Saturday was at times played on a knife-edge, with both sides having chances to take victory.
The visitors started the game the stronger, with the lively Paul Jarvis forcing a good low save from Ian Deakin on 11 minutes.
It took until just after the half-hour mark for an unchanged Buxton side to test visiting keeper Ben Hinchcliffe, with Reed drilling a shot from distance straight at the Fylde custodian.
Ten minutes later and Hinchcliffe’s reflexes denied Marc Roberts as his header, from a Kevin Sandwith corner-kick, was cleared off the line.
There was drama at the other end too as, on the stroke of half-time, Deakin was forced into a double save to keep the scoreline goalless. Punching a Michael Barnes free-kick clear, Deakin then spread himself well to push away Harry Winter’s overhead effort at the far post.
The Bucks regained the momentum in the second half, with a Reed header failing to find the target after good work by Sam Duncum, and captain Steve Istead blasting a shot wide from just outside the area.
Another Duncum run from inside his own half was cut-out near the byline for a corner, and Sandwith found the head of Matt Thornhill but his effort was tipped over by Hinchcliffe.
The visitors were temporarily reduced to ten men midway through the second half after substitute Richie Allen, who was brought on in place of Jarvis, was forced to leave the field through injury after less than 90 seconds. He was eventually replaced by Isaac Kusaloka.
In a frantic final ten minutes, Reed and Roberts both saw headers wide of the target, while Kusaloka spurned a two-on-one break by unsuccessfully attempting to lob Deakin, when a pass to team-mate Barnes was perhaps the better option.
Then, deep into added time, Reed was bundled over by Adam Farrell just inside the box and the striker dusted himself off to thump home the resulting spot-kick for his 14th goal of the season, and a vital three points for the Bucks in their push towards the playoff places.
Buxton: Deakin, Black, Sandwith, Istead, Haggerty, Roberts, Stevens, Thornhill, Reed, Maxfield, Duncum. Substitutes not used: Bradbury, Nix, Lugsden, Keane, Towey. Attendance: 332.