UniBond Northern Premier League


Hednesford Town

Knox (21), Marshall (60)

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Tom Marshall


Fleetwood Town (A) 25.8.07

Hednesford's perfect start to the season continued, with the Pitmen following up Saturday's win over Frickley with another three points, this time at newly-promoted Buxton at Silverlands


Manager Phil Starbuck elected to stick with the same side that picked up the three points on Saturday but Danny Blair lost his place on the bench to fellow new boy Dominic Heath in the only change to the matchday squad for their trip to Derbyshire

Newly-promoted Buxton had started life at step three with a 1-1 draw away to Whitby Town on Saturday, with manager John Reed making one change to his side for tonight's first home game of the season as Dan MacPherson was brought into the defence in place of Terry Agus, who dropped to the bench

The Pitmen started well, picking up where they left off at the weekend. Peter Knox, looking for his first goal of the season, was first to register a shot in only the second minute after collecting a Simon Forsdick cross  - his effort hit the side netting


Paul Robinson rose highest to meet a Forsdick free-kick three minutes later  but found Buxton keeper Scott Hartley was equal to his goalbound header as the stopper pushed it over the crossbar for a Hednesford corner kick

Buxton striker Mark Reed created the hosts' first chance of the evening on eleven minutes spinning past the challenge of Tom Marshall and firing just wide after Steve Ridley had found him lurking on the edge of the Hednesford penalty area

Two minutes later, Steve Parton went equally as close for the Bucks as he drilled a shot narrowly wide of Rene Gilmartin's near post after creating a pocket of space just outside the Hednesford penalty area

The visitors were forced into an early change of personnel on fifteen minutes, as striker Alan Nagington was forced off after picking up a knock and was replaced by winger Heath

Ross Dyer - one of Saturday's goalscorers against Frickley - almost added to his tally on eighteen minutes, but like Knox, only found the side netting with his shot from fifteen yards out

Heath made an immediate impact on the game with a great run on twenty-one minutes that saw him drift past Scott Maxfield and cross for Knox, who confidently fired past Hartley to give the visitors the lead with a well-struck first time shot to register his first Hednesford goal

Sloppy play from the dominant Pitmen almost allowed Anton Foster to score on twenty-five minutes as Marshall carelessly gave the ball away to the midfielder in a dangerous position, only for Foster to drive his shot into the Buxton fans gathered behind Gilmartin's goal


Foster turned provider for Reed a minute later, but his effort was saved by Rene Gilmartin at his near post as the striker's snap-shot was at a comfortable height for the Walsall loanee


Reed was also unlucky with a rising shot that flew over the bar on thirty-one minutes following a mistake by Hednesford skipper Dave MacPherson had gifted the ball to the Buxton striker

At the other end, the Pitmen were continuing to create openings towards the end of the first half. Tom Ward, Knox and Forsdick all had good chances to extend the away side's lead but could find no way through

After a cautious opening to the second half, the Pitmen finally prised open the Buxton defence again on the hour mark. A Forsdick corner was headed down by Dyer, leaving Tom Marshall the simple opportunity of knocking the ball home from close range

The Pitmen's confidence was flowing and substitute Chris Adam - on for Knox, could have heaped further misery on Buxton with a third just a few minutes after coming on. He made a run on to Heath's through ball, but found Hartley equal to his effort with a fine save

Buxton's frustration at not being able to get back into the game was summed up on seventy-three minutes when Reed was red-carded for a crude two-footed tackle on Marshall, leaving the referee with no other choice but to send the striker off

With only ten men to play against the Pitmen were in cruise control and continued to create openings as they looked to stretch their lead. Dyer was denied by Hartley on seventy-six minutes as he broke clear of the tiring Buxton defence but found the Bucks stopper equal to his low shot

Three minutes later, Dyer was in on goal once more as Heath played him through on goal down the right-hand side. The young striker steadied himself and attempted a curling effort beyond the reach of Hartley, but bent his shot just wide of the far post


Heath went close to capping a fine debut for the club with four minutes of the game remaining as he skipped past Foster's challenge and unleashed a shot from twenty tards out that sailed narrowly over Hartley's crossbar


It had been an impressive and professional follow-up to the Frickley performance from the Pitmen, with Starbuck's side producing some real quality football at times to underline their growth as a team from last season's tame collapse. They will go into their away game at title favourites Fleetwood Town in good form and confidence with six points from their first two games. So far, so good

Buxton: Hartley, Brough, Maxfield, Dan MacPherson, Bowker, Foster, Riley (Walker 52), Towey, Reed  (73), Parton (Lennon 58), Ridley (Agus 85)       Subs Unused: None

Hednesford Town: Gilmartin, Meakin-Richards, Adams, Ward, Marshall, Robinson, Dyer, Dave MacPherson ©, Knox (Adam 57), Nagington (Heath 15), Forsdick     Sub Unused: Simms