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St Helens Town 2-4 Padiham
9:47pm Sunday 24th February 2013 in Sport
Following their midweek 1-1 draw at league leaders Runcorn Town, where a Phil Williams’ 25 yard pile driver had put Town ahead before settling for a share of the spoils; St. Helens produced another excellent performance against championship-chasing Padiham at Edge Green Street on Saturday, but surrendered a 2-1 lead in the last seven minutes to go down 4-2, a result which sent the visitors to the top of the table.
Padiham appeared to be heading for only a third league loss this season and the manner of Town’s defeat was totally unmerited.
Chasing their third win in the last five matches, St. Helens withstood all their East Lancashire visitors could throw at them in the first half.
Once again, Phil Williams was outstanding up front and he created two good chances for Ste Edwards before Sykes-Wright put Town ahead, with a fierce shot, which was deflected by Deakin-Pickard past Davis in the Padiham goal after 37 minutes.
The score remained 1-0 to Town until shortly after half-time, when Allen scored the first of three goals, heading in narrowly past Novak at the far post from a cross which appeared to go out of play before drifting back in to the centre-forward.
St. Helens then enjoyed their best spell of the match, Edwards firing wide on 53 minutes before Phil Williams curled a lovely shot over Davis from 20 yards to put Town 2-1 ahead and, seemingly, on course for another victory with 25 minutes remaining.
As time passed by, Town looked to have secured the points, only for the ball to bounce up from the uneven surface on to the arm of Sykes-Wright as he comfortably cleared the danger from his box.
Allen levelled the scores from the spot but then had the good fortune to secure another penalty when Novak, shadowing Allen as he drifted aimlessly away towards the corner flag was harshly adjudged to have brought down the number, under the watchful eye of the assistant referee and Allen buried his second penalty to secure an undeserved victory.
The fourth goal merely added insult to injury and it was the visitors who breathed a huge sigh of relief and moved rather embarrassingly to the top of the table.
Town face a crucial trip to Squires Gate on Saturday, kick-off at the earlier than usual time of 2pm, to facilitate a quick departure for the Race Night at St. Teresa’s Club, knowing that a victory will put daylight between themselves and their struggling Fylde rivals in the battle against relegation.
Bacup Borough will be the visitors to Edge Green Street next Tuesday evening, kick-off at 7.45pm.