Northern Premier League
Grantham Town 0
Grantham Town suffered their second successive defeat following the imposed squad restructure forced by the club’s implementation of a players’ wage cut.
Despite their unfamiliarity, the Gingerbreads gelled fairly well and held out until they conceded at the classic moment, just before half time.
A second goal midway through the second half put Grantham in more serious trouble, and a last minute penalty sealed their fate.
The result edged Grantham down to seventh in the league and into sixth went Barwell who looked up for it from kick-off and went close twice early on through on-loan Connor Gudger whose second effort skimmed the bar.
Gudger turned provider from a corner kick but Richard Lavery’s headed effort went wide of the mark.
At the other end, the Gingerbreads had a chance to take the lead but striker Ben Fairclough fired past Barwell goalkeeper Liam Castle’s post.
Keeper Dan Haystead came to Town’s rescue before the half hour mark when he did well to save Jon Stevenson’s effort from a Nigel Julien through-ball.
Stevenson then set up Julien a couple of minutes later but once again Haystead parried the ball to safety.
The Gingerbreads conceded from a set-piece in the 44th minute when Lavery smashed in at close range from Gudger’s flag kick.
Both sides remained lively after the break and saw the home side threatening first with a long range drive from Eddie Nisevic. His strike had its sting taken out of it by a deflection and Haystead scooped the ball into his arms.
Town had opportunities to level the affair, the most acrobatic being a Jordan Hempenstall overhead kick. Hempenstall then threaded his way through the Barwell defence but his final touch bobbled past the goalpost.
Grantham went two-down on 73 minutes when Haystead saved a Jamie Hood header but the ball only went as far as Anthony Carney who found the back of the net.
With the clock running down into injury time, the Gingerbreads conceded a penalty when new signing Malcolm Melvin was brought down by Rhys Lewis in the box. Barwell keeper Barwell marched up the pitch to smash in the spot kick and send Town home with nothing to show for their efforts.