Warrington Town fell to their first defeat of the season as they were beaten 2-1 by Ashton United.
The Yellows were made to rue missed chances as they were twice hit by Ashton sucker punches.
Luke Duffy’s late goal gave brief hope but despite their second half dominance, it wasn’t enough.
There were changes to the Yellows line-up as Stefan Mols started in the absence of skipper Josh Amis through illness.
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Nice work by Mols enabled Sean Williams to release Isaac Buckley-Ricketts inside the full back and he bore down on goal, his shot well saved by ‘keeper Greg Hartley.
Hartley’s positioning throughout posed problems for the Yellows as he swept up anything in behind, and he proved tough to beat in between the posts too, saving from a Buckley-Ricketts header on 19 minutes.
Ashton took the lead on the half hour mark with their first shot of the game. Josh Seary appeared to stop thinking Callum Saunders was offside from a right-wing cross, but Saunders didn’t stop and lashed a left-foot shot across Tony Thompson and in for 1-0.
The Yellows ended the half with their best spell and Hartley did well to deny Mols from Seary’s right wing cross, and from the resulting corner, Buckley-Ricketts hit the bar with a header and Tom Hannigan couldn’t keep down the rebound.
That set the pattern for the second half where the Yellows enjoyed lots of territory and possession but struggled to break down the hosts, who included former Yellows Tom Warren, Matt Regan and Ben Hough in their line-up.
And they were dealt a killer blow on 52 minutes when from nothing, Sam Sheridan burst on to a loose ball from midfield and was suddenly through on goal and he kept his composure well to slot home past Thompson.
With a mountain to climb, Jordan Buckley was introduced from the bench on the hour mark and within minutes his run on the outside got him along the byline and his shot from a narrow angle hit the inside of the post.
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Ashton consolidated their position and Yellows had to wait until three minutes from time before they finally had a clear enough chance to score a goal, substitute Luke Duffy following the same path as Buckley previously but this time managing to find the goal despite the efforts of an Ashton defender behind the line.
It didn’t give much time for an equaliser to be found and so it proved, the closest the Yellows came was when Buckley hooked a difficult chance wide on the turn in injury time.
It’s now three games without a win for the Yellows as they prepare for the visit of Nantwich Town on Monday.
Ashton United: Hartley, Battersby, Warren, Sheridan (Harrop), Regan, Coates (Baird), Brewster, Hough, Saunders (Kenny), Hardcastle, Lonsdale. Unused subs: Spinelli, Simpson.
Warrington Town: Thompson, Seary (Duffy), White, Hannigan, Gumbs, Harris, Mols, Williams, Buckley-Ricketts, Dixon, Howard (Buckley). Unused subs: McDonald, Putnam, Murray.
Photo credit: Sean Walsh
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