Stamford Lions climbed to second spot in the Peterborough League Premier Division table after a hard-fought 3-1 victory away to Peterborough ICA Sports on Saturday earned them their seventh league win in succession.
With Netherton suffering a surprise defeat at Leverington, James Sheehan’s side took full advantage to move within four points of table-topping Moulton Harrox with a game in hand.
Sheehan said: “Obviously we are all very pleased with the three points, but it was a tough game. We scored the early goal and from then on it felt we were under threat.
“We took our chances well and that made all the difference - it’s a big three points from a tough away fixture.”
Tom Lees gave the Stamford side a dream start when he opened the scoring in the first minute after finishing off after Rob Montgomery’s header was initially saved.
ICA looked to hit back immediately as they surged forward and a succession of corners were finally cleared to safety.
Lions were being forced onto the back foot as the highly-charged Peterborough side continued to pile on the pressure.
Michael Webb was at full stretch to intercept a through ball before goalkeeper Aiden Finn tipped over a goalbound strike while Lees showed his worth at the other end of the pitch with an excellent last ditch tackle that denied a goalscoring opportunity.
The Lions looked to be hanging on but, as they soaked up the pressure, their danger from the counter attack was evident and none more so than on the half-hour mark.
Montgomery played a piercing pass for Luke Ball to chase after and, as he fired in his first time cross, Tom Edwards had charged the length of the pitch and was on hand to finish low past the keeper and double the lead.
Only minutes later the Lions surged forward on another swift counter attack and Rob Forster raced passed his marker and looked to pick out Lees who was charging into the area but the ball was too high.
With less than five minutes of the first half remaining, ICA were awarded a free kick on the edge of the area.
Finn got his hand to a curling free kick but could only push the ball into the side of the net as the home side halved the deficit.
The second half followed suit as the Peterborough side looked to go on the attack as Dan Aust made a crucial block before Webb again was on hand to clear the danger.
At the other end again Lions showed their threat on the counter as Edwards picked out Forster who ran into the box and fired across goal for Ball to finish and claim his 10th goal of the season and reinstate the two-goal cushion for the visiting side.
Forster then fired a shot against the post before ICA were unlucky when they also saw an effort cannon off the post and straight into the arms of Finn.
The game had been played at a frantic pace but, as the second half wore on, it slowed as the Lions were content to contain possession and see out the hard-fought 3-1 win.