Peterborough Sports close in on the play-off places after thriller at the Bee Arena

Peterborough Sports players celebrate a Mark Jones goal against Bromsgrove Sporting. Photo: James Richardson.
Peterborough Sports players celebrate a Mark Jones goal against Bromsgrove Sporting. Photo: James Richardson.
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Peterborough Sports are closing in on the play-off places in the Premier Central Division of the Southern League after a harem-scarem clash against Bromsgrove Sporting at the Bee Arena today (November 16).

Sports triumphed 3-2 as the two top scoring sides in the division lived up to their billing as the great entertainers.

Dan Lawlor converts a penalty for Peterborough Sports against Bromsgrove Sporting. Photo: James Richardson.

Dan Lawlor converts a penalty for Peterborough Sports against Bromsgrove Sporting. Photo: James Richardson.

It shouldn’t have been this close though. Sports were 3-0 up at half-time as their domination was strangely rewarded by three of the softest goals imaginable.

But before 10 minutes of the second-half had passed ex-Posh youngster Shaquille McDonald had dragged Bromsgrove right back into the game with a goal and an assist. He would have had two goals if Michael Taylor hadn’t pinched the second effort with a chested finish from a couple of inches after a quick free-kick had caught the home defence out.

That led to a nervy final 35 minutes or so with McDonald having a chance to equalise when clean through 15 minutes from time, but he missed the target.

Othewise the visitors created little as they too often tried to go through the centre of the home defence where imposing centre-back Paul Malone stood tall.

Maniche Sani is tripped to win Peterborough Sports a penalty against Bromsgrove Sporting. Photo: James Richardson.

Maniche Sani is tripped to win Peterborough Sports a penalty against Bromsgrove Sporting. Photo: James Richardson.

Sports looked as likely to score as Bromsgrove in an end-to-end final quarter with substitute Avelino Vieira and Maniche Sani seeing close range shots blocked.

The city side won the game in a 16-minute first-half spell aided by some disastrous goalkeeping, loose defending a contentious penalty decision for an alleged trip on Sani (although still photo evidence supported the referee’s decisoon).

Dan Lawlor converted the 24th minute spot-kick just three minutes after Josh Moreman’s weak 20-yard shot had somehow slipped through visiting ‘keeper Jonathan Brown.

Mark Jones completed the first-half onslaught with a poke into an empty net after Brown and his defenders had become unsettled by Sani’s pressing.

Moreman, who was outstanding before the break, had clipped the top of the crossbar once Sports took charge after a slow opening 10 minutes.

McDonald had been denied in a one-on-one situation by big Sports’ keeper Lewis Moat when the score was still goalless. oat would have been less happy with his part in Bromsgrove’s first goal, but it all ended well for the city side who moved up to sixth - one place short of the play-off places - in front of a bumper league gate of 367.

That gate-size will be dwarfed next Saturday when Kettering Town visit the Bee Arena in the FA Trophy (November 23, 3pm).

Peterborough Sports: Lewis Moat, Mitch Griffiths, Dan Buciero, Paul Malone, Matthew Miles, Dan Lawlor, Dion Sembie-Ferris, Josh McCammon, Mark Jones, Aburamane Sani, Josh Moreman. Subs: Avelino Vieira (for Moreman, 70 mins), Jim Stevenson (for McCammon, 90 mins), Ben Toseland (for Sembie-Ferris, 90 mins), Lewis Webb (not used), James Connell (not used).

Goals: Sports - Moreman (21 mins), Lawlor (pen, 24 mins), Jones (37 mins).

Bromsgrove - McDonald (46 mins), Taylor (52 mins).

Cautions: Sports _ Lawlor (foul), Miles (foul), Sembie-Ferris (simulation).

Bromsgrove - Alessi (foul), Higginson (foul).

Referee: Ryan Williams 6

Attendance: 367.