Stamford held to a draw as chasing pack struggles

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The Daniels were forced to settle for a point at Lincoln United on Saturday, on a day when several top teams struggled for points.

Stamford fought back to 1-1 with Ricky Miller scoring on the hour mark to save a point for the Daniels who went behind to Scott Coupland’s first half goal.

Stamford remain second, slipping further behind Evo-Stik First Division South leaders Coalville, who ground out a 1-0 at Romulus.

Sutton Coldfield were the only side among the chasing pack to pick up three points, beating Stamford’s next opponents, Northwich Victoria 1-0.

Elsewhere Gresley lost, Belper Town drew and third-placed King’s Lynn lost 4-2 at home to bottom side Hucknall.

Daniels boss Graham Drury said: “Nothing surprises me in this league. I take my hat off to Coalville for the way they keep getting results.”

With Stamford entering a busy run of seven games in three weeks, Drury added: “Now is the crucial stage of the season.

“There are lots of games around Christmas and teams at the top and bottom are bringing people in.

“King’s Lynn have signed striker Shane Tolley, and he’s a massive signing for this level. But the King’s Lynn result did not surprise me because Hucknall have a very good goalkeeper and the new managers have brought in 14 new players.

“It’s not just the teams wanting to be in the play-offs, the teams at the bottom are spending a few quid too. They know that if they go down it’s very hard to get back up again.”

Stamford’s congested spell begins with a home tie against Northwich Victoria at Kettering Road on Saturday.

The Daniels beat Victoria 4-3 away from home on the opening day of the season but Drury warned: “Northwich have just signed three young lads from Preston North End.”

Drury will however have skipper Richard Jones available after suspension and may recall midfielder Jack McGovern from loan at Blackstones but he will definitely be without Robbie Maddox who is suspended after collecting too many yellow cards.

Kick off on Saturday is at 3pm.

Results: Belper Town 1-1 Brigg Town; Gresley 0-2 Carlton Town; Halesowen Town 1-0 Market Drayton Town; Kidsgrove Athletic 3-3 Leek Town; Kings Lynn Town 2-4 Hucknall Town; Lincoln United 1-1 Stamford; Loughborough Dynamo 4-1 Sheffield FC; Newcastle Town 4-0 Chasetown; Northwich Victoria 0-1 Sutton Coldfield Town; Rainworth Miners Welfare 4-2 Mickleover Sports; Romulus 0-1 Coalville Town.