A battling performance from Spalding United was rewarded with a point against promotion challengers Chasetown on Saturday thanks to a last gasp goal by Ryan Flitton.
Flitton rose highest to head home deep into injury time to maintain caretaker-manager Bruno Porfirio’s unbeaten record so far in the Pitching-In Northern Premier League Midlands Division.
And they competed well throughout with a Chasetown side who went into the game four points off leaders Ilkeston with a game in hand.
Porfirio felt his side matched Chasetown throughout.
“They’re a good side that have been together a few years, but we matched them, earned the point and we were slightly disappointed not to get all three,” he said.
Following a goalkeeping injury crises, the Tulips handed a debut to Richard Stainsby signed from Ilkeston Town on an emergency loan.
He had little to do in the opening period.
The Staffordshire side haven’t lost at home so far this season but they found themselves behind on 62 minutes as Scott Floyd, brought into the starting XI after impressing off the bench against Bedford, rounded off a super counter-attack to make it 1-0.
That sparked the game into life as Chasetown poured forward and they were given the opportunity to level when they were awarded a penalty after the referee adjudged a Spalding defender had his boot too high in the box.
Jack Langston converted from the sport to make it 1-1.
Five minutes later the Scholars were ahead. Second half substitute Nehemia Zazi reacted quickest after Stainsby parried an effort away, the forward beating the still-adjusting keeper at the near post.
The Tulips didn’t lie down though and put the pressure back on the home side, winning a succession of corners and set pieces.
Eventually the pressure told with Flitton, who came on as a second half substitute, earning his side the point.
“He hasn’t been in an easy position as he’s not had mayminutes, but I had a talk with him and he’s a vital part of the squad,” said Porfirio who was delighted with those that came in.
“We don’t have just bodies in the squad. I want to make it clear they all contribute and all have a part to play.”
Tulips: Stainsby, Price, Ward, Bucciero, Stainfield, Cartwright, Broccoli, Floyd, Hinds, Macleod, Starkie. Subs: Flitton, Koroma, Bucci, Opayinka, Olivant.
p Attendance: 336