HUCKNALL Town are still searching for their first win of the New Year after falling short at home to Northwich Victoria in the Premier Division of the Evo-Stik League.
The Yellows were outclassed on Saturday (January 15) at Watnall Road as two first-half goals helped The Vics to a 2-0 win and the double over Tommy Brookbanks’ side this season.
The Cheshire side had already thumped Town 4-0 at The Victoria Ground last August.
And they picked up where they left off in the return by seeing off some early Town pressure and than taking control.
Brookbanks named an unchanged 11 from the 1-1 draw at Mickleover Sports the previous Saturday, but included former Ilkeston Town midfielder Josh Burge and AFC Hucknall winger Max Wright among his substitutes.
In blustery condition, Town started brightly and should have taken the lead in the eighth minute. But Tris Whitman headed over when well placed.
The Yellows continued to dominate possession in the early exchanges, mainly thanks to the energy and industry of central-midfield pairing Martin Ball and Dion Chambers.
But Northwich slowly established a foothold in the game and took the lead on 36 when striker Andy Fowler slotted the ball neatly into the corner of the net.
It was 2-0, and effectively game over, on 45 when the unmarked Wayne Riley, who scored a cracking free-kick in the reverse fixture in August, drilled home at ‘keeper Ross Whalin’s near post.
Northwich continued to dominate in the second half as Riley forced a smart save from Whalin on 52.
It should have been three soon after when a rash tackle by Chambers resulted in a penalty being given. But Riley’s spotkick struck the bottom of a post and was cleared.
Town’s best chance of the half fell to Tyeisse ‘TJ’ Nightingale, but the outcome just about summed up The Yellows’ afternoon. The striker raced clear but was chased down and muscled off the ball by sub Dominic Collins.
TOWN LINE-UP (4-4-2) - Whalin/ Smith, Brindley, Pheasant, Gent/ Holmes, Ball, Chambers, Griffith Junior/ Nightingale, Whitman. SUBS: Chaplin (for Holmes 58), Burge (for Griffith Junior 61), Clare (for Gent 68), Diuk (not used), Wright (not used).
CROWD - 170.