Padiham beaten in league opener

Sponsor blow: Padiham have been left with the shirt with no name after sponsors backed out at the 11th hour. Alan Smith is pictured.

Sponsor blow: Padiham have been left with the shirt with no name after sponsors backed out at the 11th hour. Alan Smith is pictured.

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Padiham’s Evo-Stik First Division North campaign got underway on Saturday at a blustery Arbories Memorial Sports Ground with the visitors coming out on top.

Spennymoor looked sharp in the early exchanges, going close on five minutes, and only a goal line clearance by Padiham defender Lloyd Balazs kept out a close range Michael Roberts effort.

Keith Graydon whistled a free kick over the Storks cross bar on 12 minutes, and three minutes later Liam Henderson went close with a shot just off target .

Padiham keeper Sean Davis saved well low down at the post to keep out a John McReady shot on 25 minutes and very nearly kept out Michael Roberts’ 29th minute penalty that gave the visitors the lead, after getting a hand to the spot kick given for a foul by Danny Craig.

Padiham conceeded a second six minutes from half-time as Liam Henderson took full advantage of a poor clearance to race in on goal and curl his shot past Davis to give the visitors a 2-0 interval advantage.

The Storks improved after the break, and as the second half progressed finished strongly, going close when Dominic Craig headed just wide from a Balazs cross on 70 minutes.

Louis Mayers had an shot from the edge of the box saved by Kyle Haves four minutes later, and on 84 minutes Padiham engineered their best effort on goal when Kurt Willoughby saw Haves off his line and tried a long range chip that Haves just got back to stretch and tip over his crossbar.