The Blues put in another excellent committed performance to defeat fourth place Droylsden on Saturday, in a match played in blustery conditions.
Simon Garner named an unchanged team from last Saturday’s 4-0 win at Radcliffe Borough.
The Blues won the toss and played with the wind in the first half.
In the eighth minute, Droylsden keeper Russ Saunders attempted a clearance, and the wind blew the ball back behind him for a corner. From the corner, the ball ran loose to Danny Brady, whose shot was saved by Saunders.
A moment of controversy came on 14 minutes when Droylsden were awarded a penalty when Garner was adjudged to have tripped Ciaran Kilheeney. The spot kick was taken by Kilheeney, but it went to Alex Palffy’s left and came back off the post.
The Blues took advantage of that let-off, and with the wind advantage threw everything at Droylsden, forcing a succession of corners.
David Lynch, Jason Hart and Garner all had long distance shots at goal, but the best opportunity fell to Sefton Gonzales on 32 minutes. From Garner’s corner, he was left unmarked at the far post, but his header went over the bar.
The breakthrough finally arrived on 39 minutes when Cory Bent ran on to Hart’s superb through ball, and he slid the ball past Saunders for an excellent finish and his first goal in a Blues shirt.
In first half stoppage time, Droylsden were awarded a free kick some 30 yards out. Adam Morning, who has made a habit of scoring against Clitheroe, duly obliged again as he curled a superb effort into the top corner of the net to level the scores at 1-1.
On 57 minutes the Blues were in front again. Seydou Bamba picked the ball up from a misplaced Droylsden pass, and he set off running before unleashing an unstoppable shot from the edge of the box, which gave Saunders no chance. This was also Bamba’s first goal for the club.
Droylsden levelled again on 69 minutes, with Morning scoring his second goal, again straight from a free kick from a similar distance to his first goal.
Both teams threw everyone forward for an end to end climax to the game, but it was the Blues who struck the decisive blow with just two minutes remaining.
Gonzales picked the ball up on the edge of the area and dribbled past a couple of defenders to lay the ball across to substitute Louis Mayers, who made no mistake from 10 yards out.
It was a dramatic end to an exciting game and great credit to both teams.
On Saturday, the Blues are at New Mills.
Clitheroe: Alex Palffy, Danny Morton, Seydou Bamba, Roberto Bonaminio, Danny Brady, Simon Garner, Cory Bent (James Walker 82), David Lynch, Sefton Gonzales, Jason Hart (Louis Mayers 64), Richard Burns (Danny Wilkins 64). Subs not used, Ross Dent & Laquan Esdaille.