Dorchester Town 3-4 Pilgrims
Dr Martens League
by Barbara Singleton
Ton-up Boston United rounded off their championship season by hitting a goals landmark. When midfielder Adie Hayes grabbed his first goal for the club with a rasping 25-yard drive, it brought up 100 Dr Martens League goals for the Pilgrims in a truly remarkable season. That goal put Boston 2-1 ahead. And the fact that they went on to add two more to their tally only served to emphasise the team's title-winning quality - even though manager Steve Evans had to leave five of his regular first teamers on the sidelines. The win also ensured the Pilgrims topped the points tally (90) of last season's champions Nuneaton, another of Evans' aims. He said: "Last year Nuneaton's runaway title win was done with an excellent total. But we have gone two better and that speaks volumes for the qualities we have shown throughout the campaign. The fact that we went through the 100 goals mark is also testament to the way we have played. It has been a brilliant season. We've had our celebrations over the weekend, but now the hard work starts in preparing for life in the Conference." The match at Dorchester certainly had no shortage of incident and belied its end-of-term billing - seven goals and two sendings-off being the main talking points. The home side, fighting to fend off the spectre of relegation, took the lead in the sixth minute when Owen PICKARD fired in from an acute angle.
But Boston hit back when leading scorer Mark RAWLE bagged his 21st goal of the season with a close range finish on 19 minutes after Andy Lodge had flicked on a free-kick from Paul Raynor. And the visitors' hand was strengthened on the half-hour when Pickard was dismissed for a needless elbow on Joby Gowshall. United then struck twice in the opening exchanges of the second half. First, on 59 minutes HAYES seized possession and from 25 yards blasted home a rasping drive to put himself in the Boston history books as the player who took the team's league goals haul up to the 100 mark. Soon after, Paul WATTS grabbed his fourth goal of the term with a close range finish after a Hayes shot had been blocked. Dorchester reduced the deficit in the 74th minute when Martyn SULLIVAN netted from the spot after he was fouled by Gowshall, whose offence was deemed worthy of a red card by referee Barry Wade. But it wasn't long before RAWLE grabbed his second of the game when heading home a cross from the left by Lodge. The home side reduced the deficit shortly before the end when Danny O'HAGAN converted a cross from Matt Lonnon. In the process, Town became only the second opposing side to score three times against Boston in Premier Division matches. But it wasn't enough to prevent the Pilgrims from chalking up their 27th win of the season.
United team: 1. Paul Bastock, 2. Joby Gowshall, 3. Andy Lodge, 4. Len Curtis, 5. Adie Hayes, 6. Craig Allardyce, 7. Andrew Stanhope, 8. Steve Charles, 9. Paul Watts, 10. Mark Rawle, 11. Paul Raynor, 12. Mick Nuttell, 14. Shaun Keeble, 15. Paul Wilson.
This report originally appeared in the Lincolnshire Echo.