NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: St Ives Town make their point by ending losing run thanks to draw at Hitchin

Peter Clark was one of the St Ives Town goalscorers at Hitchin.

Peter Clark was one of the St Ives Town goalscorers at Hitchin. - Credit: Archant

St Ives Town manager Ricky Marheineke praised the attitude and application of his players after they snapped a five-match Southern League Premier Division losing streak.

Saints climbed out of their slump when collecting a welcome point in a 2-2 draw at Hitchin Town last night.

They twice led through goals from Jimmy Hartley and Peter Clark and then survived plenty of late pressure to remain on level terms.

“A team going well at the top of the table would be happy to get a point at Hitchin,” said Marheineke. “So we’re certainly pleased to come away with a draw after our recent results.

“When on a bad run you always look ahead to see where the next point or win might come from. The longer it goes on, the more worrying it becomes.

“We’ve been competitive in virtually every game, but haven’t done enough to pick up points.

“Seeing the losses add up can have a big effect psychologically, but the attitude and application from the players was much better at Hitchin. There was more leadership on the pitch than we have seen at times.”

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Hartley broke the deadlock after 12 minutes and the only disappointment for Saints was failing to extend their lead in the opening period.

They were pegged back seven minutes after half-time by Jonathan McNamara and the two sides then exchanged goals around the mid-point of the second period.

Clark restored Saints’ advantage although it only lasted four minutes as the hosts replied with a high-class goal from Jay Dowie.

“We were by far the better side in the first half and we probably deserved to come in at half-time with a bigger lead,” added Marheineke.

“That didn’t happen, but the way we responded on both occasions after conceding in the second half really pleased me.”

St Ives are back in action on Saturday when they will chase a first home league win of the season. Welsh side Merthyr are the visitors to ProEdge Westwood Road.