Tom Wardle Reports as a single goal defeats Marine on final day…
Marine ended their 2022/23 campaign with a 1-0 loss against Matlock Town yesterday afternoon. Jamie Sharman’s header in the second half was the difference as the Mariners finished their first season back in the Northern Premier League in ninth place. As for the Gladiators, the three points guided them into the playoffs with other results going in their favour.
Neil Young was forced into making three changes from Tuesday night’s Liverpool Senior Cup final win. Sean Smith, Ben Hodkinson and Joe Hardy stepped in for the absent Joe Bunney, Josh Solomon-Davies and Sol Solomon.
Marine’s injury crisis continued a quarter of an hour into the game, when Mark Howarth limped off the pitch with Lucas Weir replacing him.
Both sides found chances hard to come by in the first half. Dan Bradley could’ve done better when he dragged wide an effort following a corner.
The best chance of the half fell to Archie White as he dispossessed the hosts’ defence. He struck the ball low to the right of Bayleigh Passant, but saw his attempt cannon off the post.
Akiel Raffie had his head in his hands when an opportunity came his way after the interval. The ball popped up to him inside the box, though he miscued his shot.
Matlock broke the deadlock on the 56th minute. A corner from the right picked out Sharman at the back post whose header slipped between the legs of Passant before finding the net.
Substitutions were made from both dugouts to try and effect the game. Academy youngsters Max Davidson and Regan Rhodes were given a run out in the second 45 amid the many absentees of first team players.
With ten minutes to go, Hardy did well to try and pull off a shot in the box, but it was closed down quickly and deflected wide.
Marine lacked a cutting edge throughout the match and didn’t do enough to trouble visiting goalkeeper Saul Deeney.
Now Young and his men will have time to reset before getting ready to do it all over again next season, in what will be another competitive Northern Premier League campaign.
Marine: Passant, Hayde (Rhodes 86), Smith, Howarth (Weir 15), Wardle ©, Johnson, Hodkinson (Davidson 68), Doyle, Hardy, Lussey, Raffie.
Unused Substitutes: Stringer, Mendes.
Matlock Town: Deeney, Sharman, McNicholas, White (Duhameau 71), Evans, Bradley, Byrne, Yates ©, Styche, Demidh (Abbott 77), Johnston.
Unused Substitutes: Pollard, Wells, Wakefield.