Skelmersdale United suffered an early exit from the FA Vase after a 2-1 defeat to NWCFL Division One South side Stockport Town in the First Qualifying round at the One Call Taxis Stadium@JMO.
United started the brighter of the two sides with a long Joe Herbert pass finding the run of Alex O’Neill who headed on but was denied a chance at goal by Town ‘keeper Morgan Piper. Town’s first chance of the afternoon saw Lee Grimshaw connect to a cross but tamely chest the ball to Ben Barnes who was helpless to prevent Aaron Knight opening the scoring in the ninth minute after he connected to an aerial pass for 1-0.
Grogan came close to drawing United level on 40 minutes as he connected to a corner and powered a header at goal which forced a terrific tip past the post from Piper. There were similar heroics a few minutes later as a stunning reflex save from Barnes denied a thunderous effort from Chiek Thiam. The final chance of the half saw United forward Lloyd Ellams rifle a shot at goal which saw a fingertip save from Piper to deny what looked a certain goal.
Town doubled their lead on 52 minutes as a one-two between Knight and Lee Grimshaw saw the latter, advance and slot past Barnes for 2-0.
At the other end, Dan Murphy drew a stop from Piper after heading on a free-kick with the resulting corner seeing Grogan head achingly into the side netting at the far post. United could have cut the deficit on 68 minutes as substitute Emini Adegbenro connected to fellow sub Richard Brodie’s flick-on but sent a volley wide of the post.
As the game entered the final five minutes, United did finally cut the gap and in spectacular style as Ellams curled a superb free-kick which flew over the reach of Piper to make it 2-1 on 86 minutes.
Ellams tried his luck again a few minutes later but thIs time saw his effort cannon off the bar though United ended the match with ten men as in added time, substitute Richard Brodie was sent off for an incident involving Lee Grimshaw as United exited the Vase, one stage earlier than last season.
Skelmersdale United- BARNES, GLENNON, PRESTON, MURPHY, HERBERT, PEET (GROGAN 25), O’NEILL (ADEGBENRO 52), DAVIES, MITCHLEY, ELLAMS, ELLIS (BRODIE 56). Subs not used- WAINWRIGHT, J.GRIMSHAW, GRIFFITHS, CAREY.