Guisborough Town 1, Seaham Red Star 0 (Northern League – Division One)
A fifth minute goal from big bustling striker Nathan Steel was enough to stretch Guisborough Town’s unbeaten run to six matches and push them two places further up the table.
The hard-fought 1-0 victory over Seaham Red Star in an entertaining tussle at the KGV could have swung either way right to the final whistle but overall the Priorymen deserved their win which put them into a comfortable mid-table position.
Interestingly, Guisborough stand in fourth position in the Northern League Division One ‘Form’ table which is a great indication of just how much progress the Priorymen have made recently under the skilful guidance of Manager Gary Forster and his coaching staff.
Guisborough have shrugged off the handicap of being without long-term injury casualties Bradley Mills and Lewis Maloney and the players who have come into the team have performed superbly – along with the rest of the squad.
Town’s latest signing – Middlesbrough U-23 attacking midfielder/winger Jay Wilson on a month’s loan – came on in the second half and looked an extremely useful addition to the squad, causing the Red Star defence all sorts of problems.
He came very close to both scoring and set up some great chances for team-mates as Guisborough looked to wrap up the game and the points.
But Red Star battled on gamely and had several chances themselves to claw back a point.
Right from the kick-off Guisborough mounted several dangerous attacks with wingman Steve Roberts once again causing the Red Star defence problems with his fast forays down the right, and it was Roberts again who was involved in the move that led to the Guisborough goal.
He cut in from the right in the fifth minute and his left footed shot was deflected through to Nathan Steel who swept the ball home from about seven yards out to give Guisborough an early 1-0 lead.
Seaham hit back and Guisborough defender Matthew Crust uncharacteristically gave the ball away but he recovered well to clear up his own mistake.
Then Seaham winger Alex Ramshaw got in a great shot from 25 yards out but it was deflected on to the Guisborough post – a real let-off for the Priorymen.
Guisborough hit back strongly through Roberts who had a shot well saved by Seaham goalkeeper Jordan Harkness and then Roberts put through Mason McNeill but the Guisborough forward fluffed his shot.
Seaham appealed in vain for a penalty when Dylan McGlade and Robbie Bird combined well with a nice one-two and McGlade went down under a challenge from Town full back Brian Close but the referee gave a dead ball kick.
In the latter stages Seaham pressed hard for an equaliser and Liam Hodgson and McGlade both saw efforts clear the bar.
Guisborough almost scored a second when Wilson crowned an impressive debut, cutting in from the left and saw his shot saved and from the rebound Louis Goldsack blasted over the bar.
But Guisborough held firm to the end to claim all three points and a clean sheet to send most fans in the crowd of 111 home very happy.
Guisborough are in cup action in midweek when they take on local Teesside team Boro Rangers in the North Riding Senior Cup at the KGV on Wednesday, 29 November (KO 7.45pm).
Photo: Strictly come prancing! Guisborough left back Dylan McAvoy (on ground) and a flying Seaham player end up horizontal as Town defender Matty Lovatt looks on. Pic courtesy of Dan Clark.