New Mills crash out of FA Vase thanks to hotly disputed penalty

Match winner Higginson
Match winner Higginson

New Mills exited the FA Vase at the first stage for the second successive season, writes Christopher Culkin.

A disappointing performance and a 1-0 defeat by Ollerton at a sun soaked Walesby Lane Sports Ground cost them a place in the next round, as well as the valuable prize money at stake.

With leading scorer Aaron Dwyer out with a hamstring strain, Jordan Arklie-Young started.

The game burst into life on the half hour mark when a seemingly innocuous challenge on Gav King by Miller Arron Kirk was deemed both a foul and inside the area.

King took the penalty himself but scuffed it well wide.

On 34 minutes Conroy jinked his way into the Millers area before squaring to Cooke who blazed his effort over.

The Millers responded with an opportunity of their own, Brooks robbing Cooke and firing in a low cross that was turned over his own bar by Brandon Shaw.

Shaw was guilty of a horrific miss as half-time approached, scooping over from three yards out following a right wing corner.

James Handley was introduced at half-time for the ineffective Pendlebury and he shot straight at the keeper on 49 minutes, before Brooks wasted the Millers’ best chance of the game.

Racing onto a through ball, Brooks lifted the ball over a defender to go clear on goal but he was only able to send his effort into the side netting.

The hosts were reduced to 10 men when Matt Thompson was sent off for a lunge.

Five minutes later Ollerton were awarded their second penalty, King going down under the challenge of Price, although there seemed to be no contact whatsoever between keeper and striker.

Conor Higgginson made no mistake and put his side through from the spot.