ALL three of Hesketh Bank’s senior teams were postponed last weekend due to the recent bad weather leaving pitches waterlogged.
The first team match at Ambleside failed a pitch inspection early on Saturday morning and the reserves’ home team match and Sunday team fixture were also called off early.
Looking back to the last fixture of 2013 the first team recorded a 3-2 home victory over a plucky Wyre Villa.
Manager James Smith was without the unavailable Neil Hulme and suspended Josh Norgate but was able to replace them with Jordan Smethurst returning from injury and Richard Hill.
Heavy overnight rain made the pitch sticky in places but otherwise perfectly playable on a cold and blustery winters day. Hesketh Bank began with a lot of possession passing the ball well but they had to wait until the 12th minute before a real chance was created when Richard Burns broke through on the right but his dangerous cross was well saved by the keeper.
Gradually the visitors got into the game and Paul Sergeant had to be quick off his line to thwart an attack. He was also relieved when his own defender Ian Dickinson’s headed clearance went just wide of the upright.
Hesketh took the lead eight minutes later when a deep cross from Jamie Dalton was headed into an empty net by striker John Stead as the keeper appeared to be jolted by one of his own defenders. This was Stead’s 13th goal in just ten appearances since his transfer from Lytham Town.
Seven minutes into the second half the lead was doubled when a cross from the right by Smethurst was delightfully tucked into the corner of the net by Birkby for his 18th goal of the season. When Jamie Johnson added a third with a delicate chip over the keeper in the 68th minute the match looked to have been won comfortably.
However despite only conceding seven goals in their previous 17 league matches Hesketh Bank managed to give away two goals in just seven minutes.
Wyre Villa’s striker Dale Pattern gratefully took both chances and in doing so transformed his team from a side out of the match with a chance to look for an equaliser in the 10 minutes remaining. Despite a couple of dangerous dead ball crosses into a crowded box the Hesketh Bank defence held firm.
League leaders Lostock St. Gerards match at Hawcoat Park in Barrow survived the weather last Saturday and finished all square at 1-1. This result means Hesketh Bank remain in second place six points behind them but with two games in hand.