Maidstone United: 1
Jack Paxman 60
North Ferriby United: 2
Kyle Wootton 16; Steve Brogan 38 pen
Ferriby gave themselves a massive pre-Christmas boost with this win at Maidstone. Ferriby produced a solid performance to take the points despite being under pressure throughout the second-half. The win saw The Villagers move up a place in the table and the festive period games with York take on an even greater significance.
Maidstone thought they had taken an early lead through Yemi Odubade but the goal was ruled-out for off-side.
There was no real goal threat from either side until Kyle Wootton scored his first goal for the club after 16 minutes. Reece Thompson battled to win the ball on the right and his cross from the by-line was met by Wootton who angled the ball down and in at the far post.
The goal spurred Maidstone and they came close to an equaliser after 19 minutes. A shot was blocked and rebounded toJamar Loza whose shot was superbly saved one-handed by Rory Watson.
Two minutes later Maidstone had another goal disallowed for off-side. There seemed to be little complaint from the home players about either of the disallowed goals.
Watson parried a shot from Jack Evans as the home side pressed. They gained most of the second-phase ball and also collected a lot of rebounds from tackles.
Danny Emerton was leading Ferriby well in midfield and gave a man-of-the-match performance. He stopped no end of Maidstone attacks throughout the game.
Ross Armstrong fired a low shot wide and Loza did the same for Maidstone.
Ferriby started to exert more pressure and Wootton and Levi Sutton both went close. The second goal came after 38 minutes. Steve Brogan’s free-kick was handled by a defender in the wall and Brogan stepped-up to hammer the penalty low to keeper Lee Worgan’s left-hand side.
Ferriby had looked a bit shaky at the back the first-half with Odudabe and Loza causing problems with their pace down the flanks.
However, despite being under pressure for most of the second-half and sitting too deep at times they only allowed the home side one shot on target. That came after 60 minutes when a free-kick was not properly cleared. The ball was played back in and substitute Jack Paxman scored from close-range.
The Villagers kept calm. The whole back line played well with Mark Gray and Ben Middleton particularly outstanding. The tackling from everybody was largely sure and solid and frustrated Maidstone throughout the half. Watson had little to do in the way of saves but he did well to come out to block an effort from Paxman.
Ferriby’s only attempt in the half was an angled shot from Wootton that went narrowly wide.
Skipper Steve Brogan was a happy man on the trip home,
“I’m delighted with the result. It’s back-to-back victories for the first time this season. The players are battling for each other. Everybody worked hard and pulled us through the game, the second-half in particular. Personally, I’m happy to see us win and that I scored with the penalty.”
Ferriby manager, Steve Housham said,
“This was ourbBiggest win of our season. It was a long trip, setting off early and getting home late. The win shows the spirit that is in this squad. I’m delighted for Kyle to score his first goal for the club. He’s worked hard in previous games and today he got his own personal reward.
“The win tightens up the relegation battle and the more clubs that are involve, the better chance we have of climbing out of the bottom four.”
NFU: Rory Watson , Sam Topliss (Curtis Bateson 77), Steve Brogan, Taron Hare, Ben Middleton, Mark Gray, Levi Sutton , Ross Armstrong, Danny Emerton, Kyle Wootton, Reece Thompson(Ryan Fallowfield 77)
Subs not used: Ryan Kendall, Darryn Stamp, Jake Skelton
Maidstone United: Lee Worgan , Callum Driver, Tom Mills , Jamie Coyle, James Rogers (Dan Sweeney 73), Vas Karagiannis, Jack Evans (Jack Paxman 45), Anthony Acheampong, Bobby-Joe Taylor (Alex Fisher 45) , Yemi Odubade, Jamar Loza
Subs not used: Ben Greenhalgh, Jack Richards, Kevin Lokko ,