One point off the top as unbeaten run goes on

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Striker Damian Reeves was the hero as Gainsborough Trinity stretched their unbeaten run to 10 matches in all competitions and went fourth in the Northern Premier League — just one point off the top — on Tuesday night.

Reeves struck the only goal of the game in first half injury-time as North Ferriby United were beaten at the Northolme.

Reeves scored at the second attempt after first being denied by the keeper.

Trinity, unbeaten since an opening day defeat at Nantwich, have a 100% record at home and have not conceded in their last three matches.

But they were pushed all the way by the lowly visitors before claiming their fourth home win.

Midfielder Simon Russell, back in the first-team, was man of the match.

Trinity started well and Alex Simmonds shot wide and Joe Maguire twice headed over from corners.

But it was the visitors who had the best early chance, keeper Jon Stewart making a terrific save to keep out Joe Lamplough’s header at a corner.

Reeves then beat the keeper in a race to the ball and netted after his first effort was saved to give Trinity the advantage in the 46th minute.

Stewart continued to be the busier keeper, however, as North Ferriby pressed for a leveller in the second period.

He denied Jordan Harrison and the visitors’ leading scorer, Luke Lofts, fired wide.

Trinity should have made the points safe 11 minutes from time when Ross Hannah hit the post and Ashley Worsfold’s follow-up was cleared off the line before a second effort was blocked.

The home side, who gave a home debut to defender Kelvin Lugsden, were almost made to pay for the misses as substitute Charlie Dunkerley’s long-range effort struck the post.

After the match keeper Stewart said: “Everybody is feeling really positive. Considering we were not at our best we managed to grind out a good victory.

“It was a strange game but we managed to get the goal, a victory and a clean sheet.

“We have set our standards high and you are not going to be at 100% every game. These are the most important victories when you are not at your best and you still get the win.

“We have a really good side with high team morale and good players on the pitch and on the bench.”

Manager Lee Sinnott added: “It was a hard-fought three points and a close affair. There weren’t too many clear-cut chances and we did not get into the free-flowing football we are capable of.

“But that is football. There is not just one way of winning a game and to keep a clean sheet and see the game out at 1-0 was a nice result. It was important that we added that kind of result to our make-up.”

Sinnott was pleased the unbeaten run went into double figures to help give the players confidence.

“We adapted well. We looked secure,” he said. “It was pleasing to get ourselves over the line.”

Sinnott praised debutant Lugsden, saying he acquitted himself well.

On Saturday Trinity travel to Stalybridge Celtic in the league.

They have been drawn at home against either Nantwich Town or Blyth Spartans in the FA Cup third qualifying round after Saturday’s win.