Continuing a stop-start beginning to the season, Salford City just failed to follow Tuesday night's victory against Bamber Bridge by losing to the odd goal at Lancaster - a scorching shot by the left back at the start of the second half that, 99.5 times out of a hundred, would have ended up lodged in Lancaster Castle's turrets way up on the hill behind the touchline.
Instead the shot flew into the top corner of the net to give Lancaster a 2-1 lead that Salford couldn't quite overcome, despite a plucky performance that could have seen them way out of sight by half time.
After only three minutes of the first half, Gary Prescott was through on goal, only to be thwarted by the rather large feet of the Lancaster keeper. Down the other end Salford goalie, Kieran O'Boyle kept out a Lancaster one-on-one but after that, it was all Ammies.
A looping header by Nelson Mota was pushed over the bar and a Lee Hodgkinson free kick was tipped over the bar as Salford threatened to run riot, before Gary Prescott finally gave the Ammies a deserved lead when latching onto Nelson Mota's flick and burying the ball in off the post to make it 1-0.
A solid claim for a penalty was turned down by the ref as Mota was bundled over in the box but on the stroke of half time Lancaster equalised from a corner. A hopeful punt over was met with a mix up in the Salford defence and, as the ball bounced in the six yard box, an unmarked Lancaster player nodded home. 1-1.
Buoyed by a gift goal, Lancaster, managed by former Newcastle defender Darren Peacock, came out for the second half with their feathers up and almost took the lead, Kieran O'Boyle making another smart save to deny them. Shortly after, however, he could do nothing when the Lancaster left back took a hopeful swing, after being tee'd up from a free kick, and the ball shot into the top right hand corner of the net. 2-1.
Salford went back on the attack, and Eder Ruiz squeezed a shot just past the post but, as the game opened up, Lancaster had their chances too, and, again, Salford's man-of-the-match Kieran Boyle kept then in the game diving to his right to push out a goalbound shot.
Very late in the game, Gary Prescott could have salvaged a point but appeared to be shin-wacked when almost through on goal, allowing the keeper to save the shot with his feet again.
So this end-to-end game finished with Lancaster securing all the points but had Salford taken the chances in the first half it could have been a totally different story. Still, a plucky performance that bodes well for the next home game against Ossett Town, this Wednesday night at Moor Lane 7:45pm.
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Photos by Andrew Goudie