REPORT | Spennymoor firmly in control as Southport slip to defeat

Southport’s recent form took a further dent after the Yellows were comfortably dispatched by Spennymoor Town at the PURE Stadium.

Adam Blakeman’s early free-kick from 20 yards after Russell Benjamin’s tackle on Jamie Spencer took a wicked deflection off the Southport wall, past a diving Hanford.

Spennymoor kept up the pressure with a long-range effort from Glen Taylor, narrowly sailing past the right hand upright, with multiple corners penning Southport into their own half for the first ten minutes.

Port were saved by the offside flag moments later, with Glen Taylor’s short range short parried into the the path of Jamie Spencer, who had nothing else to do but slot home into an empty net save for the assistant referee’s intervention.

Spennymoor doubled their lead moments later through Glen Taylor. With ex-Sandgrounder Ben McKenna’s shot palmed over the bar by Hanford, Taylor poked home from Buddle’s receipt of the short corner.

Robert Ramshaw broke free of the back line on the half hour mark, firing low to Hanford’s left, with the Southport goalkeeper saving well.

Smart combination play between Archer, Carver and Bainbridge gave Southport their best chance of the first half, but Archer’s good run down the right hand side failed to produce anything from the resultant corner.

Two changes at half time for Southport did partially disrupt Spennymoor’s flow but the visitors never looked out of control. Robert Renshaw outpaced Mo Ali to lay off a short ball to Scott McLean, who should have done much better than hitting the right hand post.

Connor Woods tried to grab the game by the scruff of the neck on 55 minutes, but scooped his long range effort wide of the far post.

Nial Watson was unlucky not to score just moments after his introduction. Tricky play from David Morgan found the young forward on the right hand corner of the box, but Watson ran out of room to get a good strike away.

But the late rally from Port was not enough to secure their third consecutive home defeat. Having been penned into their own half for the first 45, the Yellows improved late on, but promotion candidates Spennymoor looked comfortable throughout.

A free kick on 75 minutes for the visitors summed up Southport’s recent issues defending set pieces. With Stephen Thompson stood over the ball, Ben McKenna lay free and unspotted in position just yards away. Port assistant manager Jon McCarthy spotted the loose attacker just as the free kick was about to be taken, inevitably dispatched short to McKenna, who was close to adding a third, his long range effort hitting the bar.

Southport earned a penalty on 78 minutes when Watson was scythed down by the twice-his-size defender Curtis, but skipper Morgan’s penalty was saved by Dale Eve, the only real save the visiting keeper had to make all afternoon.

Port’s best chance, penalty aside, came late on as a Vassallo free kick was prodded on by Watson who couldn’t earn a consolation goal for the side.

Dan Hanford did well with the game’s final chance, saving well from Glen Taylor in a short-range 1-on-1.

While Port’s recent dip has been at the hands of promotion chasing sides, Liam Watson will be desperate for the return of injured striker George Newell.

Southport’s next game is away to Bradford (Park Avenue) on Tuesday.

Southport: 1 Dan Hanford, 2 Charlie Oliver, 6 David Morgan (C), 3 Jack Doyle, 9 Jordan Archer, 11 Marcus Carver, 12 Matthew Challoner, 4 Russell Benjamin, 5 Adam Anson, 18 Jack Bainbridge, 14 Mo Ali

Substitutes: 13 Tony McMillan, 15 Dean Winnard, 17 Niall Watson, 16 Dylan Vassallo 7 Connor Woods

Spennymoor: 13 Dale Eve, 2 Tyler Forbes, 3 Adam Blakeman, 5 Nathan Buddle, 6 James Curtis (C), 8 Adriano Moke, 9 Glen Taylor, 10 Robert Renshaw, 11 Ben McKenna, 16 Jamie Spencer, 21 Scott McLean

Substitutes: 4 Mark Anderson, 7 Stephen Thompson, 20 Frank Mulhern, 19 Joe Tait, 28 Jason Kennedy

Referee: David McNamara
Assistant Referees: Shaun Taylor, Adam Davies