Tulips respond to move into second

Spalding United shook off the disappointment of conceding a last gasp equaliser to leaders Harborough Town on Saturday to move second with a win over Lye Town on Tuesday.

The Tulips had looked set to make a statement win in the Pitching In Northern League Midland Division thanks to Riley O’Sullivan’s strike at the weekend.
But they conceded in the 95th minute as Harborough earned a 1-1 draw to keep them top.
O’Sullivan was on target again in the second half against Lye on Tuesday night before Sam Bennett sealed the win late on.
With Anstey Nomads being held to a 2-2 draw by Quorn, it lifted Spalding into second place in the table with six games remaining.
At the same time Harborough came from behind to win 2-1 at Walsall Wood.
They’re two points ahead of the Tulips with a game in hand.
“At this stage of the season it’s all about winning games,” said Tulips’ manager Elliot Sandy after Tuesday’s win. “Lye are a good side who beat us at their place.
“They work so hard and they didn’t give us a minute on the ball.
“In the first half we were a little bit nervy and got rid of the ball too quickly.
“We did miss a great chance we should have taken though.
“I said at half time we needed to be more composed and brave on the ball and shift it side to side to move them.
“We did that well.
“I didn’t think the goal was coming as we missed chance after chance.
“We created opportunities, which is fantastic, but at this stage of the season you have to be ruthless.
“It should have been comfortable but Lye never gave up and missed a chance towards the end too.
“We brought Bennett on the other week and I was thinking we needed more graft from him, and he’s come on here and was fantastic.
“He nearly scored straight away hitting the post and got that second goal.
“That’s the Bennett I know and want to see more of.
“I’m proud of this squad and have belief that if anyone drops out we’ve someone coming in who is as good and who works as hard.”
It was good for the Tulips to bounce back after the 1-1 draw on Saturday with Harborough which Spalding led for the majority.
The game was always likely to be a tight affair and blustery conditions didn’t help either side.
In a game of few chances O’Sullivan put the Tulips’ first effort away racing down the left before finishing coolly past the keeper.
In the second half he came closest to doubling the advantage but his shot was well over.
Spalding defended well keeping the table toppers comfortably at arm’s length.
But then in the 95th two Tulip defenders went for but missed a corner in an sub Jake Duffy had a free header from a yard out he couldn’t miss.
There was still time for a goalmouth scramble at the other end, but the ball fell kindly into the Harborough keeper’s gloves.
”It’s a real tough one to take,” Sandy admitted. “We can see why Harborough are right up there and we showed why we’re in the mix.
“To concede in the last seconds of the game is gutting but I’m actually proud of how the lads did.
“They played and defended really well.
“Harborough have got a lot of quality going forward and Breeds hasn’t had a save to make.
“Their keeper didn’t have many saves to make either, it was a game of very few chances.
“Riley took his goal really well and I thought we’d hang on but they threw the kitchen sink at us. Their gaffer will be saying it’s a sign of a good side to nick something.”
Two of the six remaining games are this weekend.
Spalding head to Shepshed Dynamo on Saturday before hosting play-off chasing Hinckley Leicester Road in a 3pm kick off on Easter Monday.
“It’s going to be really tough and not many teams will take six points from the weekend.
“We’ve got to use all the squad, work hard and hope we can do just that.
“It’s one game at a time and Shepshed away first is always a tough game and they’re a good footballing side as well.
“We’ll rest up and give it everything.”
Tulips v Harborough: Breedon, Draper, Warburton, Walker, Stainfield, Cartwright, Hilliard, Sherif, O’Sullivan, Graham, Curtis. Subs: Freeman, Barker, Bennett, Dawes, Sandy.
Attendance: 605
Tulips v Lye: Breedon, Dawes, Warburton, Freeman, Stainfield, Cartwright, Hilliard, Barker, O’Sullivan, Winters, Curtis Subs: Graham, Sherif, Bennett, Draper, Snedden.
Attendance: 160

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