Last gasp Brackley deny Seagulls

chrisFirst Team

An equalising goal two minutes into added time denied Colwyn Bay a deserved victory in a 2-2 draw against promotion hopefuls Brackley Town.
The Seagulls looked to have won it with a great strike from the edge of the box by Marc Williams to go 2-1 up on 86 minutes – but they couldn’t hold out.
With just two minutes of added time remaining, a long ball over the top sent Brackley substitute Owen Story racing clear and although Chris Sanna came off his line to block his shot and then dived to parry a follow up effort from Steve Towers, the second rebound fell kindly for Story to lift his second shot into the roof of the net.
That was cruel for the Bay after they had recovered from the shock of conceding a goal after just two minutes play, to produce one of their best home performances of the season.
Steve Diggin gave Brackley their early lead after a right wing cross beyond the far post was headed back by Gary Mulligan.
But the Seagulls dominated much of the game after that with Danny Taylor, in particular, putting in some great work down the right and Anthony Stephens and Frank Sinclair looking secure in the centre of the back four.
Mike Lea curled a free kick against the angle of post and bar, Cameron Darkwah fired a great chance into the side-netting after a Sean Williams shot had been blocked and Sinclair ventured forward to have a shot saved by Brackley keeper Billy Turley.
But the equaliser came on 36 minutes from a penalty when Gaz Evans was felled during a penalty area scramble, and Darkwah rifled the spot kick into the corner of the net.
In the second half Rob Hopley put a header inches over the bar and had a shot cleared off the line in another goal area scramble, while Marc Williams shot wide from Hopley’s lay off.
At the other end Sean Williams cleared a header off the line, but it looked as though Marc Williams had won it with his goal four minutes from the end of normal time.
He got himself a booking for peeling off his shirt and waving it above his head as he reeled away in excited celebration – but that last gasp equaliser meant the anticipated victory was not to be.
“It was a sucker blow right at the end,” agreed player-boss Sinclair afterwards.
“In hindsight do we bring Hoppy (Rob Hopley) back with the centre backs to see out those last few minutes when they were going gung-ho to try and save the game? But then we’d looked comfortable and the only saves Sanna has had to make were right at the end leading up to the goal.
“The two rebounds have fallen straight to their guys and thats the way our luck has been going.
“But we can take a lot out of this game. We’ve had 70 per cent of the play at least and although we’d have taken a point before the game, the way it panned out we are very disappointed not to have won it.
“I believe we are playing the right type of football now, with players who can do that and work hard.
“As performances go I’ve been happy for the most part with the last five or six games, but if you can’t keep 11 players on the pitch it doesn’t help you.
“Today the discipline was good and they (Brackley) were the ones doing all the complaining to the referee – which is a compliment to how we’ve played.”
Brackley would have gone clear at the top of the table if they had won, but their manager Jon Brady admitted “We weren’t at the races today. We didn’t match Colwyn Bay’s industry.”
Colwyn Bay: Chris Sanna, Danny Taylor, Mike Lea, Anthony Stephens, Frank Sinclair, Jamie Crowther (Charlie Joyce 81mins), Gareth Evans, Sean Williams, Rob Hopley, Marc Williams, Cameron Darkway (Jamie Matthews 80mins). Subs not used: Shaun Pearson, Louis Moss, James Ellison.
Attendance: 240.