REPORT: Willis strike gives Dronfield third consecutive win

A clinical Jamie Willis finish gave Dronfield Town their third consecutive win away at Parkgate FC. Town leapfrogged the Rotherham side into twelfth in the Northern Counties East League Division One table with a confident display in a game that boiled over twenty minutes from time, resulting in a sending off for either side.

Dronfield produced the best moment of the opening exchanges – Tawanda Rupere, restored to the side up front, cut inside from the left in the twelfth minute only to see his shot thunder against the post and out of play.

Parkgate’s Elliott Simpson saw his right wing cross fizz across goal on 16 minutes but it was Dronfield who continued to look like the side most likely to make a breakthrough.

Mark Fereday fed Matty Ord in the 20th minute; Ord’s rising shot being tipped over by Parkgate stopper Dylan Parkin. From the resulting corner, Herve Sezerano saw his close range back heel cleared off the line by the despairing home side.

Parkgate briefly threatened towards the end of the first half. A good move down the right hand side saw the ball eventually fall to Tootle, who stabbed his effort over from just inside the penalty area.

One minute from the interval, Simpson cut in from the left side only to see his shot beaten away by Dronfield keeper Lewis Naylor.

An early Mark Fereday attempt on goal marked the start of the second half and that was soon followed by Matty Ord carrying the ball forward confidently and just failing to find the target with his left foot from around 20 yards out.

Simon Harrison managed to get round Naylor in the 54th minute but managed to up-end himself with the goal at his mercy.

A strange yellow card for Fereday for shirt pulling preceded Dronfield taking a 63rd minute lead.

A neat set up by Matty Ord saw Jamie Willis pull off a clinical finish from the edge of the penalty area, striking the ball low to Parkin’s right to give the visitors a deserved advantage.

Things boiled over in the 71st minute when Harrison’s horror tackle on Rawson brought about a melee between the two sides. Out of the fracas, Dronfield skipper Stuart Hill and Parkgate centre forward Bruno Holden both received their marching orders – Harrison unbelievably only getting a yellow for his part in the affair.

Dronfield withdrew Fereday as a result with Rich Mintoft taking Hill’s place in the centre of defence. Town finished the game much the stronger. On 88 minutes, Wood’s ball from the right allowed Ord to jink into the box only for Parkin to turn his shot round the post.

Further efforts from Ord and Wood, whose shot was saved by Parkin’s feet right on the whistle, signalled the end of the encounter and a thoroughly deserved three points for Chris Millington’s men.

Town face another of their closest rivals in the table when they journey to eleventh placed Nostell on Saturday.

Parkgate: Parkin, Yates, Tootle, Crookes, Ward, Whittaker T, Simpson, Harrison, Holden, Fusco, Whittaker L.

Dronfield Town: Naylor, Wright, Stewart, Rawson, Pugh, Hill, Sezerano, Willis, Fereday, Rupere, Ord.

Attendance: 76

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