Alex Meaney

Nantwich Town’s never-say-die attitude earned a 3-3 draw at Evo-Stik First Divison South side Norton United with two goals in the final two minutes, writes Richard Scott.

Goals from Cohan Bramell in the 88th minute and Alex Meaney (pictured) in the 90th minute helped the Dabbers secure the draw.

It was an end to end opening first five minutes, which saw Norton captain Tom Fogg’s cross hit the bar and bounce behind Terry Smith’s goal.

The hosts took the lead on nine minutes when Leigh Skellern got the better of the Nantwich defence and beat Smith to score the opening goal of the game.

Then a minute later Smith had to be on hand to stop Skellern adding a second goal when he got through.

The Dabbers’ real first effort came on 15 minutes when midfielder Adam Pepper went forward and tried a shot from the edge of the area but his shot was saved by the Norton keeper Joe Hemmings.

Pepper had a free kick, but his effort went over the bar.

The hosts had a couple of chances to extend their lead but couldn’t find a way past Smith in the Dabbers goal.

With 14 minutes to go until the break, Andy White broke down the wing but his cross was too strong for the forwards in the box.

Just before half-time, former Dabber Mickey Lennon thought he would show the Nantwich fans a touch of his magic when from 40 yards out he spotted Smith off his line but his attempted lob went over the bar.

The Dabbers could have levelled when Louis Callaghan tried his luck from outside the area which forced the Norton keeper to tip the ball over the bar.

Just after half time the hosts could have doubled the lead when following an advantage played by the ref the ball fell to Norton’s Lee Cropper with the goal open, but he somehow hit his shot over the bar.

On 53 minutes Harrop stretched his legs and found space in the Norton half before setting up sub Mark Winslade but the linesman adjudged the forward offside.

Ten minutes later the Dabbers were 2-0 down when Lennon raced through and beat Smith to score.

The Dabbers pulled one back on 58 minutes when Winslade ran clear into the area before squaring to Harry Clayton who tapped home.

Norton restored the two-goal lead when a free kick was intercepted by the hosts and Cropper buried it passed Smith to make it 3-1.

Winslade should have made it 3-2 on 75 minutes when he went through on goal but his shot sailed over the bar.

With nine minutes to go, the Dabbers forced a goal mouth scramble from a Harrop free kick but no one could take control of the ball and it was an easy catch for the Norton keeper.

However, the Dabbers got a second goal when Clayton broke down the wing and squared it to Bramell who netted.

And the were level in the last minute when Meaney went one on one with the keeper and slotted h0me with the last chance of the game.

Nantwich Town are next in action on Tuesday August 5 away at Kidsgrove Athletic, kick off 7.30pm at the Seddon Stadium.

Nantwich Town: Smith, Bourne, White, M.Jones, Wilson, Long, Clayton, Pepper, Johnson, Callaghan and Green.
Subs: Meaney (on for Pepper), Harrop (on for Long), Blake (on for Callaghan) , Bramall (on for Green), Bakhti (on for M.Jones), Winslade (on for Johnson) , Hood (on for Bourne) and Phillips.

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