GRANTHAM TOWN 2 NEWCASTLE TOWN 3
GRANTHAM Town’s incredible 11-game winning streak came to an end on Saturday when they went down 3-2 against Newcastle Town.
After falling two goals behind, Grantham seemed to have done the hard part when two quick-fire goals after the break brought the sides level. But Newcastle came out on top in a manic ten minutes which saw the scoreline switch from 1-0 to 3-2.
The Gingerbreads started well and looked the more likely to open the scoring in the opening exchanges.
The always lively Paul Grimes looked set to put Grantham one-up when the ball broke his way inside the box but his effort found the side-netting following a deflection.
Newcastle had created little of not in the opening moments but they grabbed a 1-0 lead out of nowhere on 15 minutes.
A free-kick from deep in Newcastle’s own half was launched at the Grantham defence who couldn’t win the initial header. Jack Harrison raced onto the ball before lifting it over keeper Rob Murray’s head for an expertly taken goal.
Grantham worked to get back into the game with Lee Potts and Paul Grimes shining brightest.
Potts, the Town left wing-back in a 3-4-3 formation, was a constant thorn in Newcastle’s side while Grimes was a little unlucky not to be awarded a penalty on 37 minutes when he was bundled over in the box.
At half-time a group of a dozen Town fans on the terraces kept their spirits up by breaking into an impromptu game of cricket with fielding triumphing over batting for the most part.
Town flew out of the blocks in the second-half and should have been level on 47 minutes when a cracking deep cross from Maddison to the back post found Lee Potts who planted his header onto the post from five yards out.
Grantham were piling on the pressure and Newcastle nearly cracked they almost turned a corner into their own net.
Paul Grimes was then gifted a cracking chance when target man Tony Battersby pulled then ball down in the Newcastle area and unselfishly squared to Grimes who could only fire wide from six yards.
With 18 minutes to go Newcastle seemed to have put the game to bed when they went 2-0 up. Centre-back Ben Saunders got caught underneath a long ball and could only glance it behind for Newcastle striker Anthony Malbon to race onto. One-on-one with Murray, Malbon kept his cool, dinking the ball over the on-rushing keeper.
Instead of killing the game, the second goal sparked it into life.
Just five minutes later Town pulled one back. Grimes showed an excellent touch down the left-side before squaring across goal for sub Gio Carchedi. The ball seemed to be just out of the diminutive attacker’s reach but he slid to fire Grantham back into the game.
Two minutes later Grantham were on level terms. A corner involving Carchedi was worked short and before Newcastle even realised it had been taken the ball had been swung across and glanced into the far top corner.
Nobody seemed to have any idea who got the final touch but it was eventually chalked down as an own-goal.
The Meres was rocking as Grantham fought to make it 12 wins on the bounce. But instead it was heartbreak as a long free-kick into the Grantham goalmouth was flicked towards goal. Keeper Rob Murray looked to have pulled off an outstanding save but somehow the ball squirmed away into the bottom corner.
Grantham pushed for one last goal but, despite the referee adding on seven extra minutes, they couldn’t find it.