Clitheroe 2-2 Lancaster City

Mark Jackson continued his good goalscoring form against Clitheroe.
Mark Jackson continued his good goalscoring form against Clitheroe.

Lancaster City were left to rue defensive mistakes as they twice squandered a lead at Shawbridge to leave the game with a solitary point.

An intercepted back pass and a clumsy challenge in the box proved to be the Dolly Blues’ undoing with skipper Neil Marshall unfortunate to find himself the culprit on both occasions.

The City back-line otherwise had a reasonably solid game with Marshall and Glenn Steel putting in another decent showing in the heart of the defence.

With new signing Tom Ince watching on from the sidelines this was a fixture and indeed a ground that the Dolly Blues have left empty handed all too frequently. Despite taking a point and remaining unbeaten, there was a sense of disappointment around the City ranks whilst the hosts seemed satisfied with their hard-earned share of the spoils.

Mark Jackson continued his recent scoring form by opening the Dolly Blues’ account on 12 minutes.

Marshall’s drilled free kick from the edge of the box was only parried by ‘keeper Chris Mottram and Jackson was on hand to poke the ball home from a yard out at the back post.

The lead lasted all of three minutes. City were pressed as they tried to play out from the back and when Marshall opted to head back to City ‘keeper Mike Hale it all went wrong.

The skipper merely headed the ball into the path of striker Ashley Mihell. One-on-one with Hale the forward finished neatly into the bottom-right corner to draw the hosts level.

City had chances to restore their lead in the first half, with Tom Kilifin stinging the gloves of Mottram and Simon Wearing unlucky to see two glancing headers narrowly miss the target.

Jackson almost had his second when his deflection from Ryan Elderton’s corner was steered agonisingly wide of the post.

The game was level at the break and the visitors came out the traps flying in the second half and completely dominated the first quarter of the period.

Jackson was on good form in his number 10 role and set up Wearing on the edge of the box to rifle a warning shot inches wide of the near post.

When Jackson set up Simon Wills in almost identical fashion on the hour mark the midfielder made no mistake from just inside the box.

The tenacious Wills hit a wonderfully struck first-time shot with the outside of his boot that whistled into the top corner of the net.

But it all went horribly wrong again just minutes later.

A penalty was awarded after a coming together between Marshall and Simon Nangle, the home forward getting up dispatch the spot kick with aplomb to Hale’s right level things up.

The final 20 minutes were scrappy, with both teams throwing men forward to no avail.

Danny Mahoney’s 20-yard free kick was well saved by Mottram whilst Jackson had an attempt for the spectacular from 25 yards clear the houses behind the goal as the game petered out to a draw.

Lancaster City: Hale 7, Henry 6, Steel 7, Marshall 6, Elderton 6, Wills 7, Hunter 8, Mahoney 7, Kilifin 8 (Winder 74), Jackson 8, Wearing 7 (Liley 82). Subs not used: Hudson, Clark, Millar

Star man: Mark Jackson.