Clipstone extend unbeaten run to go fourth in NCEL table with win over Pickering Town

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Clipstone extended their unbeaten run to six games and moved up to fourth in the NCEL Premier league with a 3-2 victory against Pickering Town.

The Cobras were leading 3-0 after 53 minutes through a Jahmal Smith brace and an Alec Denton penalty.

However they conceded an own goal which let Pickering back into the game and the home side were grateful to Steve Hernandez who made two outstanding saves late in the game to ensure that they took all three points.

After the match, Clipstone manager Jas Colliver said: “The first half display was the best this season at home with both the shape and system working.

“We should have been out of sight when they went 3-0 up, but we are still a young team who will need to learn how to see games like this out.”

Clipstone went close to scoring on 15 minutes when Pat Lindley won the ball in the area and, after it fell kindly, Jahmal Smith got in a shot that was only narrowly wide of the post.

However the Cobras striker was celebrating one minute later when Smith produced a fabulous finish to score with a first time strike from 10 yards.

The home side thought they had scored again on 26 minutes when Alec Denton’s effort was ruled out for offside.

Pickering then had a period of pressure and Steve Hernandez did well to prevent an equaliser with his feet.

Clipstone then increased their lead when Jahmal Smith got in front of the goalkeeper and took his chance well as he guided the ball into the goal.

The home side started the second half on the attack and a good run from Smith created a chance for Brad Jones, whose 25-yard shot was deflected wide.

As the resulting corner came in, the referee spotted an infringement and pointed to the spot. Alec Denton calmly slotted the penalty home on 53 minutes.

There was another chance for Denton, when he picked up a cross from Michael Trench and shot just wide of the post, before Pickering got back into the game on 58 minutes later when a cross from Lewis Taylor was turned past his own ‘keeper by Chris Salt.

As Pickering won more possession, Steve Hernandez was called into action when he produced a great save to keep out an Ash Hope header at a corner.

However from a later corner, Pickering’s Matty Turnbull stabbed the ball home from close range to set up a tense finish.

Clipstone had keeper Hernandez to thank in injury-time when he pulled off a super save to stop Joe Danby’s corner and wrap up the points.