Pilgrims 3-1 Doncaster Rovers
by Barbara Singleton
It was high-octane stuff from Boston United as they powered to three more vital Nationwide Conference points. The Pilgrims turned in a terrific and fiercely competitive display to conquer regional rivals Doncaster in a thrilling York Street encounter in front of more than 3,000 fans. The result gave Steve Evans' side their third successive home league win and took their recent points haul up to 13 from a possible 18. Evans said: "I was very pleased with our performance. We could easily have had six or seven goals. There was a fantastic big-match atmosphere and all our lads proved they have huge hearts for the contest and showed bags of commitment." United stamped their authority on the match as early as the sixth minute when in-form striker Paul FEWINGS got on the end of a curling free-kick by dead-ball specialist Paul Wilson to bury a header beyond the reach of former Lincoln City keeper Barry Richardson. The lead was doubled in the 24th minute when a Wilson corner was met six yards out by defender Colin HOYLE who netted with a header, moments after a Jim Dick header had brought a fine fingertip save from Richardson. The lead was further extended four minutes into the second half when yet another Wilson set-piece - a left wing corner - found the head of Fewings and he nodded down invitingly for Ken CHARLERY to mark his home debut with a smart swivelled finish.
That goal effectively put the issue beyond all doubt. Doncaster's only source of reply was an 85th-minute penalty converted by Jamie PATERSON after he had been adjudged to have been impeded by Joby Gowshall. Elsewhere in the match, Boston had plenty of territorial advantage plus a crop of other good chances which could have seen their goal tally rise. In the first half, Charlery saw a header cleared off the line by Kevin McIntyre and a Fewings drive flashed inches wide. In response, Doncaster also had brief moments of inspiration - notably with out-of-sorts striker Carl Alford slicing wildly wide when clean through with only Paul Bastock to beat and then the same player heading too high from a Dave Penney corner. In the second half, Boston knew they had done most of the hard work, but late on might have increased their advantage when a 61st-minute shot from Fewings forced Richardson into a flying save. And Charlery then headed over from a Richard Lucas cross. All the time, the United engine room kept ticking over with Paul Raynor and Wilson in particular pulling most of the strings, while at the back, the Gowshall-Hoyle partnership again looked solid. Doncaster briefly threatened with efforts from McIntyre and Colin Hawkins which flew straight at Bastock before their late consolation arrived.
United team: 1. Bastock, 2. Wooding, 3. Lucas, 4. Hoyle, 5. Gowshall, 6. Wilson, 7. Minett (Stanhope 86), 8. Charlery (Elding 90), 9. Raynor, 10. Fewings, 11. Dick. Subs (not used): Nuttell, Curtis, Martin (gk).