Colne celebrated boss Steve Cunningham signing a new two-year contract by claiming a rare home win against Scarborough Athletic on Saturday, thanks to a poacher’s goal by Ric Seear on his debut.
Seear, from Squires Gate, had been pressed into the side up front, alongside fellow debutant Ollie Wood from Kendal Town, in a daring bid by manager Cunningham to liven up the Reds’ attack.
Cunningham had brought the pair in after commiting his future to the club, as chairman James Webster acted quickly to keep the North West Counties League Premier Division-winning boss at Holt House, after interest increased from rival clubs.
Colne started confidently and looked the better side throughout the first half ,as the front pair made an immediate impact and looked to cash in on good crosses by Joe Garvin and Alex Coleman.
The Reds almost took the lead after 25 minutes when Garvin’s left-foot pile driver was well saved by Boro keeper Jordan Porter after a diagonal cross found him in space on the left hand side of the area.
And three minutes later, Seear looked sure to score after he jinked past defenders but shot wide of the near post from a great chance.
At the other end, the Colne defence coped well with sporadic attacks and blocked shots by Cameron Murray and David Merris on the edge of the home penalty area.
Colne pushed forward again in the second half, and the breakthrough came on 49 minutes when Jack Lynch’s run opened up the Boro defence, and Garvin’s hard driven cross from the byeline was turned in at the far post by Seear to give the Reds the lead.
Garvin provided more danger with good balls into the visitors’ goalmouth.
But Boro looked to hit back on the break with Benny Igiehon’s non-stop running, though his finishing was somewhat wayward.
Garvin again tested Porter with some well-struck shots as Colne looked for a second goal.
But Tony Aghayere needed to make a vital save at the other end after Jacob Hazel had outpaced the Reds’ defence in a quick counterattack, and Matthew Turnbull headed just wide from a free kick.
Colne might have made the game safe when Simon Nangle shot just wide from a great opportunity after 83 minutes when Coleman and Joel Melia had combined to provide the opening.
But the Reds needed to defend in the closing stages to ensure they held on for all three points and were relieved to see Jameel Ible volley wide of goal as another free kick fell to him in the Colne goalmouth.
Colne’s next game is on Boxing Day at Clitheroe, kick-off 3 p.m., and then they are at home on Thursday to Bamber Bridge, with a 7-45 p.m. kick-off.