Pryke's late strike wins keeps Newport Pagnell in the title race
A stoppage time Adam Pryke goal saw Newport Pagnell Town nick three points at the very death against Boston Town to remain in the hunt for the UCL Premier Division title.
With title contenders Yaxley, Wisbech and Holbech all winning, the Swans looked like they would lose ground in the title race, but three minutes into added on time Dave Baker's throw saw Tom Liversedge flick on, and on the edge of the six yard box Pryke was quickest to react and fired home to spark wild celebrations.
The vital victory keep them within seven points Yaxley, with three games in hand over the leaders with seven games still to play.
The opening minutes were rather cagey in a rare Saturday of sunshine, writes sportsshots.org.uk. Michael Lyons got down the right for Newport and drove a cross into the box, Fazel Koriya under pressure managed to get a snap shot at goal which Boston keeper Seth Greaves did well getting down to block. At the opposite end Richard Ford cut in from the left wing but under pressure could only fire straight at Swans custodian Mark Osbourne, before Newport threatened again when Lyons played a great one-two with Luke Emery but could only flash his shot wide of Greaves right hand post.
On 16 minutes Pryke got down the Newport right, from almost on the corner flag he fizzed the ball across the six yard box but no team mates were anywhere near to get a touch with Greaves stranded, and the next attack saw Damon Herbert try his luck from twenty-five yards but clear the crossbar with some ease. At the other end Cameron Johnson was fed out to the left of Osbourne’s goal and he advanced before unleashing a fierce drive but again high over the crossbar.
Lyons tried his luck from the edge of the Boston area but using the outside of his boot the ball spun away from goal, before the Newport backline got caught when Lewis Scattergood got in behind to the left of goal, however he drove across the goal face and with no team mates up with him the ball drifted harmlessly away for a goal kick.
Lawless received a pass with back to goal some twenty yards from goal, up against Olly Pinner the recently returned striker went down under the challenge and whilst his team mates called for a free kick, he picked himself up and got his shot away but easily cleared Greaves crossbar, and shortly before the half time whistle Boston were in when Johnson got away behind the Newport defence, just as he looked to have got away from Yaw Ofosu he shaped up to shoot but a brilliant recovery from the central defender saw him get the block and divert for a corner.
Newport continued to press after the break, a deep cross from the wing found the head of Emery but he was under the ball and could only steer into the hands of Greaves, before another cross from the right saw Emery again get the header in, as it looped towards goal Greaves had to leap and turn over his crossbar for a corner.
Johnson threatened again for Boston getting down the left, from the edge of the six-yard box he forced Osbourne to get down low to his left to smoother his low drive, and Pryke then seized upon a loose ball in midfield before driving forward and shooting from distance, but wide of Greaves right hand post.
The home side continued to be frustrated as the half wore on, and the clouds darkened, with passes and crosses going astray, and the threat of being hit on the counter by their guests, the likelihood of a goal appeared to diminish by the minute. A ball over the Boston defence saw Lyons retrieve and lay off to Lawless, his first effort blocked and rebounded to him, as he tried again another flying block came in and the danger was cleared.
A free kick to Newport saw Liam Smyth float the ball over everyone and creeping in behind Dave Baker got the touch to divert home past Greaves, however the assistant referee had his flag raised to deny the opener. Boston were now defending for their lives as their hosts pushed hard for that elusive goal, Lawless attacked down the right and fizzed the ball into the area, as a defender tried to clear the ball rebounded off his team mate and fell nicely for Stuart Smeathers to shoot from twelve yards out, but again a defender threw himself at the shot to block, and eventually clear.
A Lyons cross from the left then saw Newport substitute Tom Liversedge head over late on, and it seemed the game was destined for stalemate until Prkye popped up in the area to knock in the winner.