Nine-men Margate grab late equaliser to break Leiston’s hearts in fiery clash at Victory Road
- Credit: JOHN HEALD
Leiston 2 Margate 2
Leiston new-boy Jake Reed was on the scoresheet for Leiston as the Blues and second placed Margate drew 2-2 at Victory Road, writes Craig Cooper.
It was a fiery Bostik Premier game, with Reed looking to have won the game for the home side with his 88th minute goal.
However, a last-minute equaliser for the side from Kent saw them grab a point, even though they were reduced to nine men.
Reed could have put Leiston in front in the first 90 seconds. But his header was well pushed away by ex-Chelsea ‘keeper Lenny Pidgeley.
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Joe Jefford headed wide from Byron Lawrence’s free kick, before Kyle Hammond fired straight at Pidgeley after a great diagonal from Lawrence.
As the half edged closer to the interval, Marcus Garnham palmed Sam Blackman’s effort away but from the Leiston clearance, Matt Bodkin brilliantly volleyed in from 40 yards to give the visitors a half-time lead.
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Leiston were again the more dominant team in the second period, and substitute Dominic Docherty headed in Lawrence’s free kick to level up the scores.
The Blues kept the pressure on and Margate blocked shots, with Pidgeley denying Lawrence from long-range.
Leiston thought they had the points in the bag when they took the lead in the 88th minute when good link up play by Christy Finch and Lawrence teed-up Reed to side-foot home.
It looked like Reed, who was signed from Lowestoft Town on Monday, had made the dream debut.
However, and to the dismay of the 200 Leiston fans in the crowd, Jack Evans slotted home in the first minute of added-on time to earn a draw for the Kent side.
Then incredibly Blackman and Jordan Chiedozie saw late red cards for dissent for the visitors.
Meanwhile in the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division, Gorleston proved too good for FC Clacton, the Norfolk side running out 4-0 victors.
While in the First Division, Whitton missed out on a chance to put real pressure on Woodbridge at the top of the table.
Shane Coldron’s men drew 1-1 at Braintree reserves.