The eagerly awaited match of the season did not disappoint and in an action packed match, it was Holywell Town who came out on top with an excellent 2-0 victory over our League rivals who were on an impressive unbeaten run in the league.
Holywell Town 2-0 Caernarfon Town
The match kicked off and both teams tried to take control of the game. The first real chance fell to Caernarfon as they won a free kick just outside the area. Lee McCardle took the kick and it flew over Danny Stanton’s bar and Holywell breathed a sigh of relief. A further couple of chances fell to the visitors but Neil Thomas and Kevin Roberts both saw their shots blocked by the Wellmen’s rear guard.
Holywell then had a couple of half chances and were enjoying good possession but could not break the deadlock, but with half an hour on the clock, Town were awarded a penalty after Lee McCardle pushed John Haseldin over in the box as he went to head the ball goalwards and the referee had no alternative but to point to the penalty spot. Steve Thomas stepped up and Paul Pritchard dived the wrong way and Town had taken the lead.
Town were forced to reshuffle as Graham Boylan was forced off the field after picking up a slight knock and he was replaced by John Shepherd. Steve Thomas again had a shot saved by Pritchard, the keeper saving well with his legs before Caernarfon had half a chance as Clive Williams got to the ball first and his flick on goalwards towards Cai Jones was cleared by the impressive Ashley Durham in the heart of the Town’s defence. Holywell Town held onto the lead for the remainder of the half and went in at the break a goal to the good.
The second half was barely 5 minutes old when Holywell Town extended their lead through Sam Jones. Graeme Williams, who was having an impressive game, won the ball and ran goalwards. He ran into the box and lifed the ball across the face of goal, and Sam Jones was on hand to head the ball home as Paul Pritchard could only help the ball into the back of the net.
The goal seemed to lift Caernarfon and they got more and more into the game , looking for a way back to rescue something from the game. The visitors were awarded an indirect free kick and McCardle could only watch as his shot was blocked on the line by John Haseldin and a few minutes later, Cai Jones saw his effort saved well by Danny Stanton. Sub Leigh Craven then blasted over from a good position then it was Ywain Gwynedd who saw his effort cleared on the line by Tom Povey then Gwynedd again had an effort which flew over the bar.
Steve Thomas and Sam Jones broke clear but Thomas’ final ball to Jones let him down then Danny Stanton was forced to save well again from another Neil Thomas effort as Caernarfon desperately piled on the pressure on Holywell. With barely 10 minutes remaining of the second half, the visitors had Manager Lee Dixon sent to the stands from the dugout by the referee, then a couple of minutes later, Cofi’s Lee McCardle was sent off for something he was alleged to have said to the Assistant Referee on the touchline. This decision seemed to anger the crowd and the visitors Lee Mcardle saw red a minute or so later for something he said to the officials. The Referee then ordered all players off the pitch due to the incensed crowd and until order has been restored some 20 minutes or so later, the players came back out and the game was to be played to a finish. The match restarted and Marc Gunther had a great chance for the Wellmen, breaking clear but he pulled his effort wide of Pritchard’s post. Further chances fell to Caernarfon during the final 10 minutes but Holywell’s defence stood firm with both Ashley Durham and Tom Povey both having a great game in the back four.
The victory kept Town’s hopes alive of gaining automatic promotion, but also means that we claw back another 3 points on the visitors and the difference now stands at 6 points with both Holywell Town and Caernarfon Town both having 4 matches to play. It’s not over yet!!!