NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Another clear sign of progress as St Neots Town hit their Southern League Premier Division points target
PUBLISHED: 15:05 15 April 2018 | UPDATED: 15:07 15 April 2018
St Neots Town reached another notable progress point yesterday.
Matt Clements’ side triumphed 2-1 against Redditch at the Premier Plus Stadium – a success which ensured they met their manager’s 60-point target.
It’s an achievement which means the current campaign is now the second-best of the six that Saints have spent at Southern League Premier Division level - bettered only in 2014/15 when David Batch’s side reached the play-off final.
While Clements admitted he was not altogether happy with the display which ensured they reached their latest milestone, another victory in a hectic spell did please him.
He said: “We weren’t at the races to be totally honest and it certainly wasn’t our best performance.
“I can think of plenty of example of us playing better and taking nothing from games, but it’s pleasing to have another three points on the board when the boys are tired after so many games in a short space of time.
“We set them the target of getting to 60 points and it’s pleasing to be there with three games to spare. We will now look to continue picking up results and end the season as well as we can.”
Saints saw strong penalty appeals ignored inside the opening minute after Dylan Williams hit the deck in the box. Their leading scorer received a yellow card from referee Jack Bloxham rather than a glorious opportunity to put his side ahead.
But they didn’t have to wait long for a breakthrough as Liam McDevitt’s effort was turned into his own net by Redditch defender Tom Fishwick.
McDevitt then delivered a key contribution at the other end to preserve Saints’ advantage by clearing a Montel Gibson header off the line.
The hosts doubled their lead when Tom Meechan struck from a narrow angle to register his second goal in as many games, but it was cut just before the break.
Tom Wood was harshly adjudged to have felled Louis Ezewele and Ashley Sammons slammed in the resulting spot-kick for Redditch, but that proved to be the end of the scoring.
Redditch did have the ball in the net again midway through the second half but official Bloxham spotted a push before Adam Page’s corner was bundled over the line in a scramble.
But chances were at a premium in a match which became increasingly scrappy as Saints collected a third win in their last four games to remain in the top half of the table.
They’re back on home turf on Tuesday night when entertaining Banbury, 7.45pm.