PADIHAM advanced to the second round of the FA Vase on Saturday following a 3-1 victory over Oldham Boro at the Whitebank Stadium.
Despite starting as favourites for the tie it wasn’t all plain-sailing for the Storks who had to contend with a sub-standard playing surface and a resolute opposition.
Padiham started the tie well and in the 11th minute took the lead when Chris Ridehalgh broke down the right before crossing to the back post where Stuart Telfer angled in a shot past Oldham keeper Gareth Fleming to make it 1-0.
Boro responded with a period of sustained pressure which put Padiham on the back foot and created a series of scares for the visitors. Oldham’s right winger Lee Knowles always looked dangerous from free kicks, getting on the end of a number of set pieces though he missed the target with a couple of headers before forcing Sean Davis in to a clever save low down at the foot of the post.
Padiham produced one good opening themselves when Damien Morrison watch as Fleming tipped his effort around the post for a corner. But then a bizarre incident occurred in the 40th minute when a fire outside the ground, which clouded the Padiham goalmouth with smoke and fumes, forced referee Ian Temple to temporarily halt play.
The stoppage lasted just over five minutes before the fire brigade arrived and despite smoke still blowing all over the pitch the game re-started and within two minutes Padiham had increased their lead after a free-kick was headed in to the path of Andy Haworth who headed beyond Fleming to make it 2-0 at the interval.
But what should have been a controlled finish to the game for the Storks failed to materialise after the break, as cup tie madness kicked in. Straight from the kick-off Padiham missed a great chance to go 3-0 up and instead Oldham pulled it back to 2-1.
Padiham’s chance came when a break down the left resulted in the ball being played across the face of goal and in to the path of Ridehalgh who failed to convert the opening. But the hosts halved the deficit when a back pass from Keiran Fletcher put Storks keeper Davis under pressure and his attempted clearance went straight to Mark Coyne who slammed the ball in to an empty net in the 47th minute.
Then the pendulum swung back in Padiham’s favour when the home side were reduced to 10 men as Redmond Parker was dismissed for kicking out at Martin Broderick following a clash between the pair in the 55th minute.
A minute later Oldham’s best chance of an equaliser arrived when a long throw found Coyne and his shot on the turn struck the post. At the other end a break led by Telfer saw Lee Morris threaded through on goal but the striker blazed his effort over the bar.
Padiham made the tie safe in the 72nd minute when Damien Morrison made it 3-1.
The Storks have no midweek fixture but are in cup action again on Saturday when they travel to Chadderton for a second round North West Counties Challenge Cup clash.
Elsewhere, Padiham Reserves dominated their game versus Ashton Town Reserves from start to finish.
Nathan Egan’s 42nd minute strike gave the hosts a slender half-time advantage but the Storks kicked on in the second half despite Keith Hutchins levelling proceedings early in the second half. However the floodgates opened when Egan, a Daniel Stubberfield brace and youth team player Zack Dale completed the scoring.
Meanwhile Padiham A picked up another three East Lancashire Football League points with a 3-2 win over Waddington. Two goals from Stephen Cassidy and a Joel Melia strike did the damage.
Padiham’s youth team got back to winning ways after two cup defeats with a 4-2 win over Barnoldswick at the Arbories in the East Lancashire Alliance Youth League.
The Storks led 2-1 at half-time and went 4-1 up before the visitors scored a consolation goal two minutes before the final whistle.
Padiham’s goal scorers were Zack Dale, Garreth Hill, Matty Ashworth and Stephen Cassidy.
Padiham FC Under 12s recorded their biggest win of the season as they beat Bacup 7-0. Hughes and Williamson scored two apiece for the hosts while Ostle, Etherington and Edwards also etched their names on the scoresheet.
Finally, Padiham Ladies paid the ultimate penalty for a below par performance on Sunday when they were knocked out of the FA Women’s Cup by Blackpool Wren Rovers in the second qualifying round.
It was the Storks’ first defeat of the season; trailing 2-0 at half-time Padiham halved the deficit in the 72nd minute but couldn’t find an equaliser.