Neots held to draw by Long Buckby

ST NEOTS Town missed the chance to go top of the UCL Premier Division table after being held to a 1-1 draw at home by Long Buckby on Saturday.

ST NEOTS Town missed the chance to go top of the UCL Premier Division table after being held to a 1-1 draw at home by Long Buckby on Saturday.

In a feisty contest the hosts, who showed their resilience to recover from behind, will ultimately feel they should have taken maximum points after creating a string of second-half chances.

The clinical finishing Saints displayed on Tuesday in dispatching Eynesbury Rovers 6-0 in the KO Cup, when Dan Jacob and Shane Tolley hit hat-tricks, was lacking against Buckby.

A frantic opening to the contest saw the visitors’ Dan Quigley blaze over when well placed while at the other end, Roy Essandoh was unlucky to see his effort rebound back off the frame of the goal.

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But it was the visitors who took the lead 13 minutes in, when Andy Gordon’s corner was powerfully headed home by Quigley, despite the best efforts of keeper Luke McShane.

The home side levelled on 34 minutes with the best move of the half. Half a dozen passes were strung together before Dan Jacob crossed from the left for Shane Tolley who, with his back to goal, neatly flicked the ball over his head for Michael Hyem, who found the net from close range.

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Level at 1-1 was how the score stayed, but a decent 15-minute spell in the second half saw several chances created and whould have resulted in a second goal for St Neots but for the outstanding goalkeeping of Tom Stephanou.

Essandoh’s bullet header from another Jacob cross had the Long Buckby keeper beaten but finished up just a foot wide, while Webb forced a decent save from Stephanou at his second attempt and the keeper also saved at full stretch from Jacob again.

However the Saints didn’t have it all their own way and had McShane to thank after he came to their rescue late on to deny Buckby all three points.

Substitute Nicolay Shterev forced an important save from McShane on 75 minutes, before the home stopper foiled Andy Gordon, who had a clear run on goal in the final minute.

The result leaves Dennis Greene’s side, who are still unbeaten after seven games, third in the table and a point off the top, behind Kings Lynn and Irchester.

St Neots host Wellingborough Town at the Hunts Post Community Stadium on Tuesday, and travel to Rothwell Corinthians on Saturday.

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