New boss earns Railway a point
Harrogate Railway Athletic's new player-manager Paul Beesley scored in the 89th minute to earn his side a 2-2 draw at Barton Town.
Having only taken the reins on Thursday evening, Beesley made an instant impression, finding the back of the net to bring to an end a four-match losing streak that had seen the men from Station View concede 17 times without reply.
“I’m very pleased,” he said of the result.
“We wanted the win and we played for the win, but I’m sat here a happy man.
“We had some very good spells and as a team, I thought that we did well. Heads were down when they went 2-1 up, but we probably could have won it in the end.
“There was only going to be one winner once we got our equaliser, so I can take a lot of positives from the game.”
The only other new addition joining Beesley in a Railway shirt at Barton was left-back Lewis Riley who has arrived from Harrogate Town under-21s.
The visitors started slowly and Jake Lofthouse had to have his wits about him during a number of early attacks to keep his side on level terms.
Jordan Hendrie was also forced to cleared the ball off the goalline to deny the hosts before Beesley forced a good save out of Town keeper Phil Jobson following Ryan Sharrocks’ cut back.
Beesley then went agonisingly close a second time, with a lofted header that was just off-target, but the sides went into the break with the game still goalless.
A substitution early in the second period saw Brandon Deane replaced by George Mason on 52 minutes.
And Mason’s first contribution was to slide the ball through the Barton defence for Chris Ovington to control and dispatch into the net for a 1-0 lead after 55 minutes.
The Locomotives were buoyed by their goal and pushed forward to try and increase their lead.
This left them a little vulnerable at the back and after Barton broke quickly, a pinpoint cross found Rob Petch who headed passed Lofthouse to equalise.
This lifted Barton and within five minutes they were in front.
Another long ball was not dealt with and dropped nicely for Petch who found himself one on one with Lofthouse before shooting across the Rail gloveman and into the net for 2-1.
Encouraged by their new gaffer, Railway fought their way back into the game and substitute Dan Barrett was soon through on goal, but saw his effort beat both Jobson and his far post.
Shortly after, a mix up between Barrett and Ovington saw a great chance disappear as neither were able to get a shot in on the Barton goal.
However, with only a few minutes left on the clock, the away side did manage to force an equaliser.
A corner to wasn’t cleared by the home defence and the ball ricoched around the penalty area before Beesley applied the finish.
With three minutes of injury time to play, Railway went for the win and managed to create a couple of chances to snatch all three points, however they eventually had to settle for a draw.
The Rail return to action on Tuesday evening when they host Worksop Town, 7.45pm kick-off.