There’s no better feeling than a last minute winner with players and supporters celebrating Scott Allison’s deciding goal together as dusk fell in Staffordshire.
There was nothing between the sides in a tight, nervous encounter but Workington kept their nerve and started to create a few openings in the later stages. One of those lead to the winning goal which Allison despatched with a trademark finish, extending his scoring sequence to seven matches.
An air of anxiety surrounded both teams, probably as a mark of respect for each other, and it was cagey stuff in a first half of few chances.
Conor Tinnion had a close range shot blocked by Danny Roberts in the opening minutes and the skipper and David Symington were way-off target with free kicks from the edge of the area.
Leek’s best chance fell to Mark Grocott but his firmly struck shot was gathered by James Atkinson at the second attempt.
Workington moved the ball about well in the early stages but the hosts came more into the picture towards the interval.
It was much of the same in the second half although the chances which came Leek’s way were squandered. Lewis Billington twice had a clear shot at goal but dragged the ball wide on each occasion.
A well worked free-kick was headed down into Tim Grice’s path but the leading scorer didn’t connect with the ball properly and Atkinson gathered comfortably.
Reds couldn’t get into their stride and their normal fluency was nipped in the bud with Leek’s pressing and closing down very effective.
But they remained patient, kept trying to move the ball about and one or two openings were carved out late in the day. Reuben Jerome looked a good bet to score after one clever move but a last-ditch tackle saved the day.
And when Roberts fumbled a cross which caused a moment of panic in the Leek area, Reds sensed there might just be something to take from the game.
It was another bouncing ball in the area which led to the winning goal. Steven Rigg’s persistence and a crucial header caused the uncertainty and, when the ball was partially cleared to Allison, he drove home a ninetieth minute winner to spark wild celebrations amongst players and supporters alike.
Leek boss, Neil Baker, was full of praise for Workington’s efforts saying, “We drew at Borough Park earlier in the season having been second best and lost a tight game in the return to a very good team.”
Danny Grainger’s responded by praising Leek for making it difficult for his side. “They worked hard to prevent us playing our normal game and not many teams have done that to us this season. It was a closely fought, tight contest so I’m delighted to win it so late in the day.”
Grainger also confirmed that David Symington picked up an abdomen injury which may make him a doubt for the home game on Tuesday.
Leek Town: Roberts, Bavanganga, Keenan, Grocott, Harrison, Wara, Billington (Baker, 88), Reeves, Grice (Opoku, 88), Carr (Trickett-Smith, 88), Davidson. Substitutes – Laird, Pickering.
Workington: Atkinson, McCaragher, Birch, Wordsworth, Smith, Hubbold (Reilly, 73) Symington (Rigg, 62), Carroll (Casson, 82), Allison, Jerome, Tinnion. Substitutes -Leslie, Clarke (not used).
Referee: Jake Allsopp, Wolverhampton
Bookings: Wordsworth, Carroll, Rigg (Workington)