Padiham book their place in semi-final of LFA Trophy

Chris Turner (left) in action for Padiham against Radcliffe Borough last season
Chris Turner (left) in action for Padiham against Radcliffe Borough last season

Padiham ended Atherton Collieries’ 16 match unbeaten run on Monday evening to book their place in the semi-final of the Lancashire FA Challenge Trophy.

Steve Wilkes’s side, who have also dispatched Atherton LR along the way, recovered from a goal down to win 4-2 at Alder House.

Daley Woods was the pick of Padiham’s personnel in the opening half an hour, causing havoc down the right hand side.

The winger teed Alex Murphy up on two occasions in that spell, which the midfielder was unable to convert, before testing Steve Dryden with a stinging drive which the goalkeeper was forced to turn around the upright.

However it was the home side that took the lead on 31 minutes when a poor goal kick landed at the feet of Atherton striker Mark Battersby who raced in on goal to shoot past Storks keeper Mike Donlan to put the Collieries 1-0 up.

Kieran Pickup went close twice in the run up to half-time with a shot that Dryden tipped around the post while another attempt flashed just wide of the target.

The Storks, though, did get back on level terms before the break as Alex Murphy won a penalty. Woods took responsibility from the spot and converted to make it 1-1.

Woods netted his second of the evening 12 minutes in to the second half to give the visitors the lead, collecting the ball from Martin Parkes before curling a shot out of the reach of Dryden.

Pickup and Woods both went close to extending Padiham’s advantage but they were soon pegged back when Jacob Jones popped up to make it 2-2 in the 68th minute.

But Padiham, who face Runcorn Town in the third round of the MEN United Cup at the Arbories on Wednesday, responded immediately and restored their lead with 20 minutes of the tie remaining courtesy of Chris Turner scoring directly from a corner.

After Donlan’s brave save prevented Ben Hardcastle from cancelling out Padiham’s lead once more from the restart, the away side went on to settle the fixture.

Turner’s inswinging corner in the 75th minute sparked panic in the Atherton box which allowed David Hankin to guide a header past Dryden to make it 4-2.

The Storks will now join Chorley, who overcame a stern test from Clitheroe, local rivals Colne and either Lancaster City or Ashton Athletic in the next round, with the latter replaying their tie on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Padiham are back in North West Counties Premier Division action tomorrow when they travel to Brocstedes Park to face Ashton Athletic (kick off 3 p.m.).