Gloucester City 1-3 Boston United
Boston United secured an excellent 3-1 win over Gloucester City on Saturday as two more Marc Newsham goals helped fire the Pilgrims to victory.
Ben Milnes was also on target, following a David Bird strike, as the Pilgrims deservedly claimed all three points at the Abbey Business Stadium.
Newsham had fired United in front three minutes before half-time and then added his second from the penalty spot two minutes later.
United, with Ricky Drury replacing the ill Paul Bastock in goal and Josh Burge coming in for the injured Danny Sleath in midfield, raced out of the blocks and should have taken an early lead.
Keeper Lewis Carey made an excellent save to keep out Spencer Weir-Daley’s angled drive following a Gareth Jelleyman cross, before Nathan Stainfield powerfully headed over the bar and was then denied by a top Carey stop — both from Ian Ross corners.
Gloucester gradually mustered a response and Drury had to divert Darren Mullings’ looping header over the bar. The United stopper then made a brilliant point-blank save to keep out Matt Lock’s firm drive after a Mullings free-kick had broken loose.
United took the lead on 42 minutes. Stainfield’s raking throughball caught out Matt Coupe and Tom Hamblin and NEWSHAM ran on to control the ball before blasting home, low to Carey’s left, from 18 yards.
The Pilgrims doubled their lead two minutes later when Mike Green handled Weir-Daley’s angled drive and NEWSHAM smashed home the resultant spot-kick.
United were rampant and Weir-Daley was close to a third moments before half-time, but his shot was scrambled behind for a corner.
Gloucester cut the deficit on 59 minutes. Seizing possession 25 yards from goal, BIRD let fly with a thunderbolt which flew past Drury with real aplomb.
United soon re-established their two-goal cushion. A slick move involving Weir-Daley and Newsham cut the ball back for MILNES to finish neatly into the top corner from 12 yards.
Boston continued to create with Carey doing well to deny Burge, while Weir-Daley slammed an effort marginally wide following Milnes’ pinpoint delivery from the right.
Gloucester threatened once more with Will Morford lifting an ambitious angled effort on to the top of the United crossbar.
Newsham came agonisingly close to completing his first-ever United hat-trick deep into stoppage time, but Carey saved his first effort and Coupe heroically blocked the second.
Gloucester (4-4-2): Lewis Carey; Mike Green (George Lloyd 69), Matt Coupe, Tom Hamblin, Jack Harris; Matt Lock, Matt Rose, Darren Mullings, David Bird (Matt Liddiard 69); Scott Wilson (Sam Rawlings 46), Will Morford. Subs (not used): Neil Mustoe, Kieran Mace.
Boston (4-3-3): Ricky Drury; Conor Marshall, Nathan Stainfield, Kevin Austin, Gareth Jelleyman; Ben Milnes, Ian Ross (Lee Canoville 71), Josh Burge; Ben Fairclough (Ryan Semple 67), Spencer Weir-Daley (Kallum Smith 90), Marc Newsham. Subs (not used): Chris Hall, Tom Ward.
Referee: Ollie Yates