Holywell Town 2-3 Denbigh Town
Wellmen fall to defeat in emotional night for the club.
It was manager John Hasledin's last match at home before he steps down from the managerial role in the summer, and everyone wanted a Wellmen victory to cap off his last game in the Holywell Town Dugout.
Town opened the match the stronger of the sides with Steve Thomas sooting wide in the first chance of the match, then Mark Winslade had a half chance cleared by a Denbigh Town defender, and it didnt take long for the Wellmen to open the scoring as they took a 14th minute lead through Shaun Tuck. A Denbigh defender miss hit a back pass to goalkeeper Keighan Jones, and Tuck was the sharpest and beat Jones to the ball and rounded the keeper and fired home into an empty net.
Jones saved well a few minutes later to deny the Wellmen adding to their tally, before Shaun Pearson saved well from Kristian Pierce's shot. Mark Winslade then had an effort fly over the bar before Tuck nearly added his and Town's second but his shot fell wide of the target. Captain Steve Thomas had a great chance on the half hour mark, bursting through the defence, but he couldn't keep his shot down and it went over the bar. Thomas then lost the ball down the right and Denbigh pressed forward and Matt Worrall's low cross hit Craig Pritchard and went out for a goal kick. Pritchard then had a shot go inches wide of Pearson's post before Thomas conceded a free kick in a dangerous position, but Kristian Pierece's free kick hit the wall and was cleared to safety. Denbigh Town were getting a lot more of the ball by now, and Ben Nash wasn't far off climbing well but his header sailed over the bar from a corner. The Wellmen then broke well down the left, and Graeme Williams found himself bursting through the penalty area but his low cross was gathered well by Keighan Jones with Tuck waiting at the far post to pounce on the loose ball. Town had the beating of the Denbigh left back again shortly afterwards, Winslade this time having a powerful run into the box, and his low cross beat the Denbigh Town defender, and also wrong footed Graeme Williams and Denbigh's Matt Cook was able to clear the ball to safety.
As the game entered the final few minutes of the half, the game turned sour for the Wellmen as Denbigh Town grabbed an equaliser. From a corner, the ball was cleared as far as Pierce, and his low cross into the area finds Danny Sullivan who directs the ball into the net for the equaliser. Barely a minute later, the visitors had taken the lead. Craig Pritchard was adjudged to have been fouled in the area, and Pierce stepped up to take the spot kick and he sent Pearson the wrong way to give Denbigh Town the lead.
The Wellmen went off for half time knowing that they would need an early goal to get back into the game, and that goal came a couple of minutes into the half. Mark Winslade burst forward down the right, and his low cross into the box found Tuck who slotted the ball home past Jones to give Town the start they needed. Town were back in it!
Danny Sullivan came close to increasing Denbigh's lead shortly afterwards but is free kick came back out off the post, then Matt Worrall had a shot saved by Pearson. Winslade then came close to giving Town the lead, bursting through the defence and beating his marker, but Jones was able to get a hand to Winslade's shot and push it past the post for a corner. A few minutes later from another Holywell corner, the ball fell to Jonathon Jones but from a tight angle, his shot his the side netting. Pierce then had a long range shot saved easily by Pearson then a quick ball upfield then gave Denbigh their third goal. Worrall chasing the ball and his shot beat Pearson to give Denbigh the lead again. Town pressed for an equaliser, with Winslade having a shot saved again by Jones, and Phil Lloyd's header from a corner flew over the bar and Danny Desormeaux had a shot go wide of the target.
The referee blew for full time and it wasn't the ending that Manager John Haseldin wanted, and with Denbigh picking up all three points, it guaranteed them 2nd place in the league and Town will be hoping to get back to winning ways on Saturday with the long trip to Penrhyncoch.
Manager John Haseldin added, "Tough to take that defeat, the last 2 games have certainly shown the ruthlessness of the league and how big decisions change games. Thank you so much to the supporters that stayed behind for me at full time, absolute first class"
The Reserves travelled to Coedpoeth for their Welsh National League game, and won a great point after a 0-0 draw. The Reserves next face Llay Welfare away on Friday night, kick off 6.30pm.