NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Spot of bother in stoppage time for St Ives Town, but boss Ricky Marheineke is happy with a point
- Credit: Archant
Seeing three points turn into one after being on the receiving end of a controversial penalty decision in stoppage time against opponents battling to avoid relegation could easily be the cue for the teacups to go flying around the dressing room.
But St Ives Town manager Ricky Marheineke cut a surprisingly positive figure in the wake of such circumstances last Saturday when his side were held to a 1-1 draw at Halesowen following a dramatic finish to a Southern League Premier Division Central clash.
Saints went ahead led in the first half through a high-class Jake Newman strike – their only on-target effort during a tough afternoon in the Midlands.
But they remained ahead until the dying moments when already-booked defender Jarvis Wilson was dismissed for conceding a spot-kick that allowed the hosts to level.
And while Marheineke certainly didn’t agree with that crucial decision, he had few complaints about the overall outcome.
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The Saints boss said: “The fact I’m happy with a point which is crazy after conceding a penalty in the 95th minute.
“It would normally feel like a defeat, but it is a good draw when you break the game down.
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“We were second-best in a lot of areas and it’s quite unbelievable that we were still ahead in stoppage time.
“However, the only thing that stops up getting three points in the end is a really poor refereeing decision for the penalty.
“The Halesowen lad had lost control of the ball and it was going off the pitch. Everyone will look at the highlights and laugh at a decision the referee should be ashamed to have made, but Jarvis also has to learn from it and ensure he stays on his feet in situations like that.
“Halesowen are a good side and I don’t see them being in the bottom three at the end of the season.”
Saints now face another away trip tomorrow night (Tuesday) when heading to Leicestershire to take on Barwell.
But they are back on home turf this Saturday, 3pm, when they host third-placed King’s Lynn Town at Westwood Road. The Norfolk side are unbeaten 19 league games stretching back to September.
Marheineke added: “We had the Barwell game in mind with our team selection at Halesowen on Saturday and we’ll hopefully have plenty of fresh players on the pitch.
“We set the boys a target of four points from these two away games and that is still on after the draw at Halesowen.
“We can then look forward to a massive test this Saturday against King’s Lynn.
“It’s a tough but exciting prospect for our players, our management team and our supporters.
“King’s Lynn have one of their strongest squads and best managers in their league and their form is outstanding, but it is a good opportunity to see how far we’ve come in the last couple of months.”
Ian Culvershouse is back in charge of King’s Lynn for the second time. He was re-appointed in October after leaving at the end of last season.
Culverhouse began the current campaign with Grantham Town and tasted FA Cup defeat at the hands of St Ives.