Hall Road Rangers 3-2 Brigg Town

Hall Road Rangers inflicted defeat on high flying Brigg Town as they won 3-2 on Saturday at Haworth Park. It was a very fast start from Rangers as they blew their opponents away. Inside the 1st minute, Chris Spinks almost gave Rangers the lead with a long-range effort which went wide.

Lewis Gibson put Hall Road in front in the 6th minute with a lovely finish which was his 1st goal for the club. Two minutes later, James Piercy got his 4th goal of the season as he doubled Hall Road’s lead with a header which looped into the back of the net.

There was some attacking threat shown by Brigg in the 9th minute which was dealt with by debutant Aidan Smith in the Rangers goal. However, the Zebras reduced the arrears in the 19th minute when former Hall Road player Alfie Usher fired an effort home.

In the 31st minute, Brigg fired an effort wide. Meanwhile, Sam Robinson came close to getting on the scoresheet as his effort hit the crossbar. The visitors could have got back on level terms in the 41st minute, but they flashed a shot wide.

A forced substitution was made by Rangers in the 42nd minute when Alex Knaggs replaced Harry Griffin. This setback didn’t affect Hall Road at all as they extended their lead in the 43rd minute thanks to Reece Moody’s 13th goal of the season. Moody subsequently had to be taken off and was replaced by Elliott Williams.

Rangers put in a solid defensive display in the second half as they repelled Brigg’s attempts to get themselves back into the game. The Zebras did put an effort over the bar in the 50th minute and also fired a shot wide in the 65th minute. In between those, Hall Road made their final change in the 61st minute when Luke Bullement replaced Paul Wray.

Brigg pulled a goal back late on as another former Rangers player Scott Phillips got on the scoresheet. Despite this, Hall Road saw out the rest of the game to earn all three points.

Rangers joint-manager Dave Ricardo thought that it was an entertaining game.

“It was a well-fought game for both sides. We raced into a two-goal lead. We’ve played well in the last few weeks and we haven’t got our just rewards at times as we haven’t been clinical enough. It was quite ironic today that we didn’t play as well at times for a number of reasons.

Got to give a lot of credit to Brigg as they didn’t let us play well. They were on the front foot for the majority of the first half, but we were clinical and managed to get our noses in front at the right times.

The 3rd goal just before half-time was all-important and made it 3-1. With the team and squad we’ve got, and especially being at home, you shouldn’t lose many games from being 3-1 up at half-time so that was a blessing.

All three goals were good goals and I don’t think their keeper had a chance with any of them. We’ve conceded a sloppy goal if I’m honest. If we did it again, I don’t think we’d have conceded it.

In terms of the goals, we’ve done well. In general play in the first half, they were the better side I’m not going to lie. They made most of the running in the second half, but we defended professionally. It wasn’t a back to the walls job until probably the last ten minutes.

We did what we needed to do and we were a lot better with the majority of second balls. Our shape was a lot better. We tweaked it about halfway through the second half as they went 4-3-3 so we matched them.

The lads, such as Luke Bullement, responded really well. Jacob played more or less his 1st game at centre half today and was outstanding. It was a team effort and there wasn’t one individual who shone. The goalkeeper Aidan Smith that’s come in didn’t put a foot wrong all day. His kicking was excellent, his handling was good and he couldn’t have done anything with the two goals so that was a pleasing debut for himself.

We’ve had players like Sam Robinson come back from injury which is good. It was a tough, hard-fought NCEL game and full credit to Brigg who put their full share into it so it was good” Ricardo said.

Oliver Harsley