A LATE penalty gave Colne a well deserved draw at high-flying Stockport Sports on Saturday after an impressive performance.
The Reds started in confident style on the 3G artificial surface and almost took the lead after five minutes when Ashley Carter’s curling cross was headed just past the top corner by Mark Coyne (pictured).
Four minutes later, Colne had their appeals waved aside when Micky Saunders was pulled down from behind on the edge of the penalty area following one of Dominic Craig’s trademark runs through the midfield.
And Saunders had no more luck with the decision when he was tripped by a defender as he chased a through ball from Craig.
At the other end, Chris Thompson made a good save to push a shot round the post after Liam Irwin was allowed to run at the Colne defence.
And new signing Ben Hoskin cleared a loose ball from the goalmouth after John Marsden’s shot was deflected across the crowded penalty area.
Carter gave the Reds the lead after 38 minutes when he outjumped the home keeper at the near post to head home Coyne’s cross.
In Colne’s next attack, Coyne headed on for Saunders but the home defence scrambled the ball behind for a corner.
And as the Reds kept up the pressure, Tom Fowler’s through ball sent Saunders on a run into the area only to be brought down by the defender, but again nothing was given.
Colne should have built on their half-time lead with some good attacks, but Coyne shot high over the bar when Saunders’ cross reached him at the far post after 53 minutes. And a series of good chances went begging after good moves on the left wing involving Chris Bailey and Paddy O’Brien.
But the Reds conceded an equaliser after 69 minutes when a harshly awarded free kick just outside the area was dispatched into the top corner of the net by Stockport’s Kyle Hamid.
Thompson made a vital save at the feet of Matty Ward after a jinking run into the area, but the home side took the lead after 80 minutes when Irwin scored from close range with the Reds defence under pressure.
But Colne bounced back and Saunders was inches over the crossbar with his lob after Ryan Brereton’s brilliant through ball.
Two minutes from full time, O’Brien’s free kick was knocked away from the penalty area by a defender’s hand and O’Brien fired home the spot kick to give the Reds a well-earned share of the points.
In injury time, Saunders who had come in for some rough treatment throughout the game, eventually retaliated and received a red card from the referee.
FINAL SCORE: Stockport Sports 2, Colne 2
Tomorrow, Colne are at home to Winsford United kick-off 3 p.m., before travelling to Padiham on Tuesday for their rearranged Lancashire FA Co-operative Trophy tie, which was postponed on Tuesday due to a waterlogged pitch after heavy rain and a 7 p.m. pitch inspection.
This game replaces Colne’s away league game at Bacup on Wednesday.
Also next week, Colne Reserves are at home on Monday night to Lancaster City Reserves, kick-off 7-45 p.m.