Padiham’s misery compounded by latest defeat to Cammell Laird

On Target: Sam Whittaker grabbed a consolation for Padiham Reserves in a 4-1 defeat to Glossop North End
On Target: Sam Whittaker grabbed a consolation for Padiham Reserves in a 4-1 defeat to Glossop North End

Two goals in three second half minutes saw Cammell Laird round off a torrid month for the Storks at the Kirkland Stadium.

Steve Wilkes side failed to register a single point from four Northern Premier League First Division North fixtures in November while defeat to Ramsbottom United also saw Padiham crash out of the Lancashire FA Challenge Trophy.

While the visitors lost the clash 2-0, they had goalkeeper Sean Davis to thank for keeping the scoreline respectable following an outstanding display.

Right from the first minute the hosts had Padiham on the back foot when Freddie Potters’ wizardry from a free-kick looked to have beaten Davis, but the Storks stopper saved superbly when acrobatically tipping the effort around the upright. Sam Morris then cleared a Jamie Henders shot off the line in the eighth minute before Davis denied Craig Cairns.

The home side’s pressure mounted as the first half progressed with John Couch’s attempt from the edge of the box flashing over the bar while Davis thwarted Cairns once again.

Padiham’s first attempt on goal arrived midway through the opening half when Ben Allen played in Kieron Pickup but the striker fired in to the side-netting after beating his marker.

Martin Parkes then headed a Chris Turner free-kick over the crossbar to relieve some of the pressure on Padiham’s rearguard, but that respite didn’t last long as Davis was called on again to turn another Cairns effort away for a corner before forcing Paul Lundon’s effort over the bar in the 33rd minute. Davis then block a Joe Evans shot just minutes later.

Padiham went close to breaking the deadlock just before the break, with Allen’s ferocious volley was exceptionally saved by Mike Langley from Tom Bradley’s assist. Allen went close again when his header from a corner was cleared off the line.

The Storks st rted the second half on a positive note and only another good save from Langley kept out Allen’s opening effort. Dean Overson then fired over on the volley from Parkes’s flick on, while at the other end yet another excellent stop from Davis spurned Cairns’ effort on the turn as the keeper’s fingertips forced the ball off target.

Then, it was Langley’s turn to draw the crowds applause when pulling off another amazing save to keep out Allen’s screamer in the 56th minute.

Parkes had proved an aerial threat for the Storks throughout and he went close when heading over from a Louis Mayers corner just before the hour mark. But the home side responded and winger Evans drilled an effort across the face of goal moments later.

Jay Foley fizzed an effort over the bar from 20 yards as the hosts continued to press before a curling effort from Evans whistled past the upright. However, Cammell Laird’s pressure eventually paid off in the 67th minute when Storks midfielder Mark Sharples was robbed of possession and Evans’s cross to the back post was turned in by Henders to make it 1-0.

That advantage was soon doubled and it was Cairns who finally found a way through. Davis made a great save from a Lundon header, the rebound struck the bar inside a crowded penalty area, but Cairns was on hand to force the ball over the line in the 70th minute.

Padiham had a great chance to pull a goal back with 15 minutes remaining but Allen drove his shot wide after being found in space.

The Storks entertain Northwich Victoria at the Arbories on Saturday, with kick-off at 3 p.m.

Elsewhere, Sam Whittaker scored Padiham’s only goal in a 4-1 defeat to Glossop North End Reserves at the Arbories.

Padiham Under 18s came out on top in a seven-goal thriller away at Langho as a Ben Beardsell hat-trick and a Kieron Gamble strike earned a 4-3 triumph in the East Lancashire Alliance Youth League.

Padiham FC Ladies lost 5-4 at home to Leigh RMI Ladies in the North West Womens Regional League with the Storks goals coming from Sarah McCabb (2), Justine Wallace and Elise Howarth.

Finally, Padiham FC retained the NHS Bird Cup when a mixed side thrashed Rock Rovers 6-0 at Colne’s XLCR Stadium.

With the game goalless at the interval, a brace apiece from Tom Walsh and Gareth Hill in addition to goals from Tom Murphy and Kieran Britton saw the Storks crowned champions once more.