Due to a number of reasons Glasshoughton Welfare were only able to field 10 players in Saturday’s game at Armthorpe Welfare, but gave their best performance for some weeks and were most unfortunate not to share the points as they lost 3-2.
The visitors made light of their numerical disadvantage and despite the home men taking an early lead when Stuart Preston was allowed space to rake across keeper Josh Archer the game was level throughout the early periods with Glasshoughton testing Armthorpe keeper William Biggs.
In a further good home build-up Preston was again looking dangerous, but lifted over from a good position and when Glasshoughton responded Matt Cressey failed to cross with players well placed for an attempt on goal.
Glasshoughton surprisingly continued to take play to their opponents, but on the stroke of half-time were dealt an unwarranted body blow when defender Adam Walsh was unable to avoid handling a close contact shot and the match referee unbelievably awarded Armthorpe a penalty kick, which was drilled home from the spot by Preston
Glasshoughton were clearly dismayed by the penalty decision and came out for the second half with all guns blazing.
They bewildered their opponents by scoring two quickfire goals, First, Cressey angled home after only four minutes of play following a length of field move and minutes later the visitors were unbelievably level when Kingsley Weatherald forced over the goal-line under heavy pressure.
The teams were locked at 2-2 for a lengthy period with visiting defenders Adam Walsh and Steve Barraclough pulling out all the stops to deny Armthorpe.
But eventually the extra man, particularly with the introduction of substitutes and fresh legs by Armthorpe, proved a bridge too far for the battling visitors, as following sustained pressure Craig Aspinall forced home to put Armthorpe in front again.
Despite a valiant effort to the very end the visitors were unable to find that extra push to hit back again and could not get the point they so deserved, succumbing to the narrowest of defeats.
There was further disappointment for Welfare after the game when they found out results elsewhere had led to them slipping to the bottom of the Division One table.
They have now gone nine games since their last win, but do have seven of their next nine matches on home soil as they look for the improvement they need to escape the relegation zone.
This Saturday Glasshoughton will hope to be able to field a stronger side as they return home for a league match against Retford United, kick-off 3pm.