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Telford United 2-2 Pilgrims

Nationwide Conference

by Barbara Singleton

Another important Conference point has been added to Boston United's title crusade. But on the balance of play, last night's trip to Telford should probably have yielded maximum spoils. For lengthy spells of the encounter, the Pilgrims held the upper hand and frequently had their hosts back-pedalling but could not make the decisive strike. The United boss said: "It's difficult to get points anywhere in this league. But so far this season our away form has been exceptional. And in many respects we were a bit disappointed not to have taken all three points, not least because we should have been well ahead at half-time. But we can take a lot of credit from the match and now start to look ahead to two important home matches." At Telford, the Pilgrims trailed to an early goal, but rallied positively to carve out numerous chances and eventually prise out a lead by the 73rd minute, only to see victory snatched away by a home equaliser three minutes from time. Just eight minutes had elapsed when Boston fell behind. A cross from the right saw Peter Smith hold Ross Weatherstone's challenge before laying the ball back for Steve PALMER to fire past Paul Bastock. A 13th minute corner from Mark Angel led to Mark Monington but his header was booted off the line by Gareth Hanmer.

Telford rallied briefly and Jake Edwards headed wide but Boston finished the half on top with Angel testing Ryan Price with a free-kick, while Daryl Clare and Simon Weatherstone both went close and an Angel cross-shot was cleared off the line by Jim Bentley. The second half saw Boston increase the tempo and they equalised on the hour. Simon Weatherstone curled a free-kick out to the left. Paul Ellender headed back across goal with a ball being tipped against the bar by Price, only for MURPHY to force in from close range against his former club. Telford showed signs of fighting spirit and won a free-kick on the edge of the box but Bastock saved well from Richard Scott. Boston again hit back and went ahead in the 73rd minute when COSTELLO stole in and headed home from an accurate cross by Angel. Later on Clare found space to get in a shot, but Price saved well. At the other end on 75 minutes Jake Edwards curled in a tremendous shot from the right which Bastock tipped onto the inside of a post and then clutched safely. Telford's resolved paid off in the 87th minute. Scott fired over a free-kick, Martindale nodded back and Neil MOORE supplied the finishing touch close in. In the dying moments, Bastock had to make two more excellent saves while at the other end Murphy fired off-target when set up by Jamie Cook.

Boston team: 1. Bastock, 2. Clifford, 3. Gould, 4. R. Weatherstone, 5. Monington, 6. Ellender, 7. Costello, 8. Murphy, 9. Clare, 10. S. Weatherstone, 11. Angel (Cook 84). Subs (not used): Town, Conroy (gk), Rusk, Lodge.

This report originally appeared in the Lincolnshire Echo.