By Ryan Batty:
Sean Cooke’s 15th goal of the season set the tone as the Dabbers ran out 3-0 winners away at Coalville Town on a comfortable afternoon in Leicestershire.
Cooke set the pace early on, with a rare header after eight minutes with David Forbes doubling the lead five minutes before the interval as a goalmouth scramble saw the forward take it over the line. The result was assured as Joe Mwasile finished the job after sixty-six minutes; a mistake from the goalkeeper after a corner saw Mwasile turn it into an empty net.
Nantwich made two changes from the side that lost to Witton Albion last weekend, as Forbes and Jamie Morgan returned to the side, taking the place of Nathan Cotterell and Toby Mullarkey, the latter of whom was still regaining match fitness after the injury sustained back in November.
The first chance of the afternoon came after two minutes for the hosts, as a decent run on the right from Cleveland Taylor saw his effort gathered easily by Spiess as the Dabbers’ keeper was able to clutch the ball at his chest.
However, Nantwich wouldn’t have to wait long to take the lead, as Courtney Wildin put in an excellent cross into the middle that Cooke was able to head past Matt Coton in the Coalville net – a rare sight for the Dabbers, but one that took Cooke to his fifteenth goal of the season – and his eleventh in the league.
The hosts could have equalised soon after, as good play in the build-up led to a shot from McGlinchey, whose curled effort looked destined for the top corner, but the Coalville man was denied by the crossbar.
It was end-to-end stuff in the first twenty minutes or so, Nantwich having a quick chance soon after, when a cross fell to Harry Clayton, yet the striker couldn’t double the Dabbers’ lead, as his half-volley ricocheted off the post.
After twenty-five minutes, Nantwich had yet another great chance, when Mwasile took the ball round Coton, but the touch was a tad too heavy. The winger tried to square it across goal for Clayton; an unexpected bobble in the mud denied the forward of getting to it.
There wasn’t much to report for the next fifteen minutes or so, but five minutes from the break, Cooke was clattered on the left by Nat Watson (whom was subsequently booked). Cooke’s subsequent free-kick found Troy Bourne at the back post, and he headed it into the path of Forbes, who made no mistake from a few yards out, tumbling the ball over the line to extend the Dabbers’ advantage.
At the break, the hosts made a change, as an injured Watson was replaced by Ant Carney.
While the hosts came back out for the second half looking fiercer, the Dabbers were well-prepared for the fightback and kept in firm control for the early showings of the second period and could have added a third but for Mat Coton’s save from Harry Clayton’s close range effort.
Despite this, the first real chance of the second half came for the hosts on the hour mark, as Spiess rushed out to face an oncoming attacker, made the clearance but only as far as a Dan Creaney whose first time lob went high the bar and into the car park behind the ground.
The Dabbers were back at it soon after, as with twenty-five minutes to go, Cooke’s corner looked to be palmed away by Coton, yet a poor attempt from the keeper let the ball drop to Mwasile, who simply slotted the ball into the back of the net – a third for Dave Cooke’s men.
Desperately searching for a way back into the fixture, the hosts made a double-change with twenty minutes left, replacing Cleveland Taylor and Tom McGlinchey with Alex Dean and James Carvell.
Despite his earlier mistake Coton made a brilliant save to deny a fourth Dabbers goal as Forbes broke free at the back post but saw his half volley tipped over the bar.
The Coalville keeper was keeping the scoreline down as he next denied Wildin who played a fine one two with Hughes before seeing his driven effort palmed over the crossbar.
The Dabbers were playing the hosts off the park, and despite two late changes that saw Steve Jones and Jake Phillips enter the fray in place of Joe Mwasile and David Forbes, they couldn’t add to their lead.
However, Sean Cooke had a late chance with a free-kick that was destined for the net, but a goal line header from defender Kyle Bryant prevented the midfielder from adding to his tally.
The Dabbers now face two home games this week starting with Crewe Alexandra in the Cheshire Senior Cup on Tuesday, before returning to the Weaver on Saturday to take on Matlock Town.
Coalville: Coton, Taylor (Dean 70’), Bryant, Torr, Towers (C), McGlinchey (Carvell 70’), Hollis, Creaney, Watson (Carney 45’), Howes.
Unused subs: Hannis, Freeman, Dixon
Nantwich: Spiess, Morgan, Wildin, Stair, Bourne, Bell, Mwasile (Jones 87’), Hughes (C), Clayton, Cooke, Forbes (Phillips 88’)
Unused subs: Boney, Mullarkey, Cotterell
Ref: Ms L Robinson
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