Market Rasen Town 2-1 Grimsby Borough Res.
A goal in each half from Market Rasen Town’s leading scorer Kyle Paul was enough for the home side to gain maximum spoils from their latest home fixture in the Lincolnshire League last Saturday.
With the pitch passing a mid-morning inspection and with heavy lunchtime rain, conditions in parts of the field were heavy to say the least.
The visitors, Grimsby Borough, used the opportunity to play a number of first team players in a bid to improve their lowly league position as their first team were without a fixture.
Rasen went into the game without the unavailable defender Dom Revill and strikers Adam Brumpton and the injured Steve Adcock.
This meant a return to the starting line up for Drew Marshall at left back and Guy Smith in his familiar holding midfield role.
Rasen started the brighter and after good pressure from James Bennett a poor clearance from the experienced Baker in the visiting back line gave Kyle Paul an opportunity. On this occasion he rushed his shot from the edge of the box and fired over the bar.
As with previous weeks, Rasen looked to get plenty of balls into the visiting penalty area using Ed Bruntlett’s long throws and Matt Rutherford quality from set pieces.
It was from one of these Rutherford free kicks that James Bennett brought a superb point blank save from the Borough keeper with a fine header.
Bennett’s hold up play and aerial superiority was a feature of Rasen’s first half domination and Bennett was unlucky to see claims for a penalty waved away by the referee when another powerful run saw him bundled over in the box when in full flow.
On the half hour mark Rasen took a deserved lead with a goal of real quality. Top scorer Kyle Paul received the ball on the left hand side of the penalty area, dribbled across the front edge of the box, and just when it looked like he had taken the ball too far, with a swivel of the hips, some how used his stronger left foot to fire past the keeper.
Dale Christie in the Rasen goal and the Rasen back line had coped well with occasional Grimsby attacks and the only surprise was that Rasen didn’t go into half time with a bigger margin of goals.
Rasen’s midfield trio of Scott Lowman, Guy Smith and skipper Joe Osbourne continued to win the midfield battle, closing down their opponents and feeding the frontline with decent service. With Smith in particular revelling in the heavy conditions, cleaning up anything that got passed Lowman and Osbourne.
Rasen needed a little slice of luck when the referee awarded what seemed like a soft penalty to the visitors.
Dale Christie was forced to save at the feet of the goal bound Borough striker. The ball rebounded to one of his colleagues who under pressure from Marshall and Brunlett went to ground resulting in the referee pointing to the spot. Fortunately the resulting spot kick was blasted high over Christie’s goal.
This did however bring Rasen back to the boil and shortly after Matt Rutherford swung over a pin point cross from the right wing which was met by the on rushing Kyle Paul. His fierce header rebounded back off the cross bar, but Paul’s momentum allowed him to prod the ball home for his and Rasen‘s second goal.
With 10 minutes remaining the visitors did capitalise on Matt Rutherford’s hesitancy to reduce arrears and leave a somewhat nervy last few minutes.
Good solid defending from the impeccable Norburn and Bruntlett, along with Christie’s ability to deal with a couple of last ditch Grimsby Borough corners saw the home team complete their first back to back victories of the season.
Rasen manager Ian Williams said: “We were excellent today from front to back. We dealt with the difficult surface better than the opposition and thoroughly deserved the points.
“Kyles first goal was a terrific piece of skill. If that was on Match of the Day it would be replayed over and over for weeks.
“He is a great talent who really should be playing at a higher level. When he is on that form he is as good as any striker in the league.”
Rasen continue their fixtures this Saturday when Louth Town reserves visit Rase Park for another 2pm kick off.