by Garry Clarke
TWO second half goals from recent signing Elliot Nevitt ensured Warrington Rylands 1906 overcame Padiham in the first round of the Buildbase FA Vase.
But they left it late to put the tie out of their opponents reach, with Nevitt, who had opened the scoring in the 62nd minute, only making the game safe in stoppage time at the end of an open and at times scrappy encounter.
Goalkeeper Graeme McCall launched a goal kick down field; Jack Tinning flicked it on into the path of Nevitt who calmly slotted the ball past the Padiham goalkeeper.
Nevitt brok the deadlock when he powered his way through the visitor’s rear guard to race onto a long ball played over the top of the defence, holding off a defender’s challenge and then firing the ball into the net.
Not at their fluent best Rylands were made to work hard for their place in Monday’s second round draw. Their NWCFL Premier Division rivals more than matched their hosts.
Padiham went close to opening the scoring at Gorsey Lane in the 8th minute when a last ditch tackle from Joe Denman prevented Willem Tomlinson from getting away a clean shot. Dan Morton and Tomlinson both had shots deflected wide of the Rylands net later in the first half while Mark Ayres headed over the bar from a corner.
Desperate defending by Padiham kept Rylands at bay in the 14th minute when following a corner defenders blocked several shots as the ball pin balled around the area before being scrambled clear.
Paul Shanley twice went close to scoring with a shot and a header just off target, Charlie Doyle twice had long range shots blocked while Tom Freeman lifted a shot over the keepers head only for the ball to hit a post and bounce away.
The visitors who had a penalty appeal dismissed just before half time were awarded a penalty in the 50th minute. A defensive mix up presented the ball to Tomlinson in the Rylands penalty area, his first effort was brilliantly save by McCall, but as he moved towards the rebound he was brought down by Gary Kenny prompting referee Thomas DuPrez to point to the spot. McCall came to his side’s rescue, diving to his left to save Ayres’ penalty kick inches inside the foot of the post.
Rylands seemed rattled by Padiham’s start to the second half as their play became disjointed and their opponents started to get on top. Harvey Close had a shot deflected wide, McCall did well to keep out a Chris Anderson effort and Tomlinson smashed a free kick onto the cross bar.
After Nevitt’s opening goal Padiham pushed more men forward in search of an equaliser which never came. Rylands held firm repelling their attacks and taking advantage of the extra space to counter attack.
Substitutes Jack Tinning and Andy Scarisbrick both went close to scoring. Tinning curled a shot from distance just wide and Scarisbrick guided a glancing header just the wrong side of the post.
Nevitt had a goal disallowed in the 85th minute when the assistant referee adjudged a team mate to have been offside in the build up, but Nevitt was not to be denied in the 92nd minute as Warrington Rylands 1906 took another step along the road to Wembley.
RYLANDS – McCall, Gerrard, Freeman, Kenny, Denman, Sheen, Doyle, McNamara (Scarisbrick), Nevitt, Shanley (Tinning), Drummond (Simpson). Subs not used Jones, Spencer, Wellstead.