Leiston 1 Lowestoft Town 2: Trawlerboys place huge dent in rivals’ hopes of promotion
PUBLISHED: 19:50 17 April 2017 | UPDATED: 20:47 17 April 2017
There was a dramatic finish in this Suffolk derby with three late goals in a feisty affair that saw referee George Laflin produce eight yellow cards and dismiss Leiston boss Glen Driver from the dug-out.
It has been a torrid time for Leiston and this latest setback against their local rivals from Lowestoft in front of 517 fans bares testament to their wretched sequence of results since February, having picked up a meagre 17 points from 19 matches.
From a place of strength Driver’s side have now slipped to sixth place in the Ryman Premier Division and to have any chance of the play–offs must beat Enfield Town in North London Saturday.
The visitors were weakened by injuries and suspensions but forced the early pace with Shaun Bammant proving a handful up front.
But the first shot in anger came from Leiston’s leading scorer Matt Blake, driving powerfully over from 25 yards and Ade Cole’s fierce shot forcing Jake Jessup into a full length save.
Joe Jefford sent a fine ball beyond the last defender to Blake but the keeper did well to deny the opportunity. At the other end Bammant went close with a close range shot.
After the break Leiston created a fine move culminating in Joe Francis and substitute Joe Marsden combining but resulted in Gareth Heath missing a great chance.
Frustration crept into proceedings and the referee became centre of attention. With so many stoppages the game lacked any fluency as both sides sought to grab the initiative.
With a draw looking the likely outcome Lowestoft shocked the home side by taking the lead on 86 minutes.
The recent frailties of the home defence featured again when Jake Reed in space nonchalantly drove past the helpless Ashley Jones much to the delight of the visiting supporters.
The home side attacked in search of an equaliser but three minutes later were caught on the break that resulted in Cole tripping Reed inside the box and Nico Cotton scored from the spot.
Deep into injury time Seb Dunbar sent a free kick into the penalty area that resulted in Connor Hubble pulling a goal back but it was too little too late.