Stafford Rangers 2 Coalville Town 1
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Saturday 15th October 2016
Two missed penalties, a sending off that wasn’t and, most importantly, a Boro win – there was plenty to talk about after Saturday’s victory over Coalville.
It was the bizarre incident midway through the second half that was the main topic of conversation after the match. A foul on Elliot Hodge by Karl Demidh sparked a melee involving several players. After the players had calmed down the referee incorrectly showed yellow yards to Boro’s Kris Taylor and Coalville’s Lee Troke. For the visiting player it was a second yellow – resulting in a red. This created uproar in the visiting camp before Troke was recalled from the changing rooms. Overall, the incident caused a delay of more than 8 minutes.
There was plenty of drama besides that. Rangers missing two first half penalties and hitting the bar twice and conceding a soft goal that let Coalville a path back into a game they should never have got before finally holding on for the points.
Clever footwork from Hodge earned Rangers’ first penalty on 11 mins when he was tripped by Kyle Bryant. Kyle Perry stepped up but Matt Coton chose the right way and made a comfortable save.
Perry nearly made amends a minute later with a shot that Coton was forced to tip over and when Hodge forced another save from the visiting keeper it seemed only a matter of time before Rangers would open the scoring.
Rangers were gifted another chance on 25 mins when Perry had his shirt pulled by Dean Freeman. This time Sean Geddes went straight down the middle with the spot kick but Coton kept it out with his feet.
A header from Perry hit the bar and somehow Troke managed to keep out Hodge’s follow up.
Coalville somehow held out but their own threat was limited. Demidh hit a free kick straight at Adam Whitehouse just before the midway point while Steve Towers sent a long range drive at the Boro keeper on the stroke of half time.
Rangers’ pressure finally paid off just two minutes after the resumption when Geddes slipped the ball through for Hodge who rounded the keeper before slotting the ball home.
Four minutes later it was 2-0. Taylor’s free kick was headed down and Josh Gordon had time to control before hooking the ball home.
The expected goal rush didn’t materialise although Richard Batchelor headed a corner against the bar on the hour.
Instead, it was Coalville who gained a foothold on 65 mins and it was a disappointing goal from Rangers’ point of view. Slack defending saw the ball fall to Towers on the edge of the area and his shot trickled through the legs of Whitehouse.
A well timed tackle from Kieran Morris halted Demidh then came the challenge from the Coalville player that sparked the melee.
When play eventually resumed, Coalville pressed the Rangers defence in their search for an equaliser but Rangers stayed strong when needed and could easily have added another themselves as Freeman cleared off the line from Perry and Torr cleared from Izak Reid.
Rangers: 1 Adam Whitehouse, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen, 4 Michael Townsend, 5 Kieran Morris, 6 Kris Taylor, 7 Elliot Hodge, 8 Josh Gordon (14 Izak Reid 85m), 9 Kyle Perry (16 Mat Bailey 90+3m), 10 Sean Geddes (12 Levi Reid 79m), 11 Richard Batchelor.
Unused Subs: 15 George Bowerman, 17 Jack Sherratt
Coalville: 1 Matt Coton, 2 Kyle Bryant, 3 Lee Torr, 4 Danny Jenno (14 Nathan Fox 54m), 5 Dean Freeman, 6 Liam Walsh, 7 Jack McMillan (16 Nathan Watson 54m), 8 Steve Towers, 9 Massiah McDonald (12 Alex Troke 63m), 10 Brad Munn, 11 Karl Demidh.
Unused Subs: 15 Alex Dean, 17 Sean Bowles
Cautions: Taylor, L Reid (Boro), Torr, Freeman, Demidh, Watson (Coalville)
Referee: David Croft
Report by Chris Elsley
Stafford Rangers 3 Marine 0
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Tuesday 11th October 2016
Rangers ended their winless streak with a deserved victory over Marine.
The game got off to a fast and furious start with the visitors putting Rangers under early pressure but Danny Mitchley was unable to convert either of the two chances that came his way.
Rangers weathered the storm and Sean Geddes forced a save from Calvin Hare who recovered well to get to the loose ball ahead of Josh Gordon.
Kyle Perry then miskicked in front of goal but it was a series of fouls, resulting in four yellow cards in 10 minutes, that livened the crowd up.
Sean Geddes hit the post with a shot clipped over the defence and Elliot Hodge was denied by a last ditch tackle from James Short.
Rangers continued to dominate after the interval and Gordon fired over soon after the restart.
The reward finally came on 55 mins. The immediate threat from a Rangers attack looked to have gone but Kris Taylor collected the ball some 25 yards out and with the outside of his left foot he sent a shot swinging away from the keeper and into the top corner.
Kurt Sherlock missed a chance to level sending a free kick wide and Rangers took advantage when Sean Geddes hit a low volley inside the keeper’s right hand post on 70 mins.
It was game over 9 mins later. Hodge did well on the left and his cross picked out Kyle Perry who nodded past Hare.
Rangers: 1 Adam Whitehouse, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen, 4 Michael Townsend, 5 Kieran Morris, 6 Kris Taylor, 7 Elliot Hodge, 8 Josh Gordon (14 Izak Reid 81m), 9 Kyle Perry (16 Mat Bailey 87m), 10 Sean Geddes (12 Levi Reid 90+2m), 11 Richard Batchelor.
Unused Subs: 15 George Bowerman, 16 Mat Bailey, 17 Kieran Preston.
Marine: 1 Calvin Hare, 2 Lewis Field, 3 James Short, 4 Liam Goulding, 5 Karl Clair (17 Ryan O’Hare 63m), 6 Liam Willis, 7 Michael Monaghan (12 Craig Lindfield 77m), 8 William Smart, 9 Danny Mitchley, 10 Kurt Sherlock (15 Warren Bellew 77m) 11 Joe Mwaslie.
Unused Subs: 14 Obi Anorvo, 16 Sean Hessey
Cautions: Gordon, Bowen (Rangers), Field, Short, Willis (Marine)
Referee: Philip Hardisty
Report by Chris Elsley
Grantham Town 2 Stafford Rangers 1
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Saturday 8th October 2016
Rangers left themselves too much to do as they made it 10 games without a win in defeat at Grantham Town.
Boro were behind inside four minutes as Curtis Burrows fired home a rebound, and further behind as Michael Hollingsworth doubled the lead.
At that point, Grantham looked like they might canter to victory, but Boro found some shape, and reduced the deficit before the break with a goal from Josh Gordon, one of three debutants.
They hammered at the door in a much improved second-half display, but just could not find a way through.
Rangers included all three of their new signings in the starting line-up as Josh Gordon, Richard Batchelor and Sean Geddes all came into the side, replacing Rob Stevenson, Mitch Tolley and George Bowerman.
There was also a change in goal, with Adam Whitehouse reclaiming the gloves from Kieran Preston.
Mat Bailey was back in the squad after injury, but only on the bench, but there was no return for Christian Dacres.
Boro had a couple of early chances, with Michael Townsend nodding over and Geddes seeing his shot blocked, and largely the new faces slotted in well, stringing together some good moves.
However, at the end, Boro were a bit of a mess, and just four minute in, Grantham capitalised.
The goal actually came from a Boro corner, as from the delivery, the visitors handballed and the Gingerbreads took the free-kick quickly, breaking through Clifton, who ran the ball all the way to the edge of the area before shooting. Whitehouse saved awkwardly, but Burrows got to the rebound and tucked it away from a tight angle.
Boro had a great chance for an equaliser when James Bowen's throw from the left came all the way through to Gordon, who missed the target from six yards. Then Kyle Perry got his head to a cross and looped a shot goalwards that Jake Turner saved.
Grantham should probably have been given a penalty 20 minutes in when - after giving the ball away cheaply, Bowen rashly slid in on Filipe Barcelos, but the referee waved play on to the evident displeasure of the Boro faithful.
Just two minutes later though, it was 2-0, as Hollingsworth pounced on a loose ball in the area to fire home.
Elliot Hodge - lively as ever - won a corner with a shot after good work from Sam Griffiths, before Boro clawed their way back into the contest.
The aerial ball was proving a potent weapon for Neil Kitching's side, and after Perry headed the ball on, Gordon nipped in to clip it past Turner, though Townsend was given the credit by the stadium announcer.
It was a vital strike for Boro to give them hope going into the break, though Grantham twice came close to re-establishing their two-goal cushion, only to be thwarted by last-ditch Stafford defending.
Rangers' defence did not look much more solid at the start of the second half, though at the other end of the pitch, Perry probably should have done better than to head a close-range shot wide of goal.
Geddes fired a free-kick narrowly over the bar before Grantham really should have made it three as first Barcleos was denied by a good strong hand from Whitehouse, and then Burrows' follow-up was kept out by a combination of Townsend and the post.
After a couple of costume changes for Grantham after a split boot and a bloodied shirt, Boro had their own penalty shot when Kris Taylor's free-kick struck the arm of a defender in the wall.
Boro were generally better in this half though, another free-kick seeing Geddes fire a shot down the throat of Turner, before Burrows did similar with a Grantham set piece.
Bowerman joined the play soon after, and his first contribution was collect Bowen's throw and lay the ball off for Gordon, who looked like he might have been clipped as he burst through on goal, but the referee gave nothing.
Hodge was inches away from opening his Boro account with a shot from a tight angle that rolled along the goal-line and struck the far post before being hacked clear, and then another Bowen long throw was met by Batchelor, but his shot was deflected for a corner.
In the 80th minute, Townsend nodded on for centre-half partner Kieran Morris, who nodded just over, before Perry's header goalwards at the back post was claimed by Turner under pressure from substitute Izak Reid.
Boro threw Bailey on up front for the final minute of normal time and some eight minutes of injury time.
Reid's free-kick was turned away by a diving Turner, and then with virtually the last kick of the game, Bowerman turned in the area and hit a shot that looked to be heading for the bottom corner, until Turner pulled off a great save.
GRANTHAM: 1 Jake Turner, 2 Luther Wildin, 3 Ellis Stoey, 4 Rhys Lewis, 5 Michael Hollingsworth, 6 Danny Meadows, 7 Harry Clifton, 8 Curtis Burrows, 9 Filipe Barcelos (12 Lee Shaw 60m), 10 Ben Saunders (14 Ku Muskwe 90+4m), 11 Luke Shaw.
Unused Subs: 14 Jack Beckett, 16 Danny Durkin, 17 James Waby
RANGERS: 1 Adam Whitehouse, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen (16 Mat Bailey 89m), 4 Michael Townsend, 5 Kieran Morris, 6 Kris Taylor, 7 Elliot Hodge (14 Izak Reid 83m), 8 Josh Gordon, 9 Kyle Perry, 10 Sean Geddes (15 George Bowerman 75m), 11 Richard Batchelor
Unused Subs: 12 Levi Reid, 17 Kieran Preston
Cautions: Townsend, Hodge, Gordon (Boro)
Referee: S Abbott
Report by David Broome (Staffordshire Newsletter)
Stafford Rangers 0 Rushall Olympic 2
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Saturday 1st October 2016
Stafford Rangers' early season struggles continued as they went down to Rushall Olympic at a rain soaked Marston Road.
Rushall went ahead inside 7 minutes when Mo Diop glanced a header past Stafford keeper Kieran Preston following Luke Bottomer's corner.
Former Stafford forward Bottomer had earlier tried a couple of shots on goal joy but although it was Stafford who asked most of the questions, Rushall seemed to have the answers at the back.
A poor clearance from Zak Martin fell to Elliot Hodge who fired straight at Jose Veiga, then Kyle Perry headed wide but the best chance fell to George Bowerman following Perry's knock down, only for Veiga to make the goal line stop.
Kris Taylor went wide but it was Rushall who extended their lead on the stroke of half time when Alex Reid pounced on a defensive error between Sam Griffiths and Kieran Morris.
Stafford continued to try to create in the second half. Taylor's speculative volley dipped just over and Perry shot straight at Veiga.
Rushall sub Edilson Antonio shot straight at Preston but, by and large, the visitors were content to sit back and defend their lead and Stafford struggled to break them down.
The nearest they came was when Perry beat Veiga to a Taylor free kick before shooting over while Mitch Tolley went wide after another Taylor free kick.
Rangers: 1 Kieran Preston, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen, 4 Michael Townsend (16 Spencer Gunnell 87m), 5 Kieran Morris, 6 Mitch Tolley, 7 Elliot Hodge, 8 Kris Taylor, 9 Kyle Perry, 10 George Bowerman (14 Izak Reid 54m), 11 Rob Stevenson (15 Joe Thomas 54m).
Unused Subs: 12 Levi Reid, 17 Jermaine Johnson
Rushall: 1 Jose Veiga, 2 Aris Christophorou, 3 Zak Martin, 4 Aaron Forde, 5 Sam Whittall, 6 Joel Kettle, 7 Dean Keats, 8 Mikael Partodikromo (15 Edilson Antonio 54m), 9 Mo Diop (12 Henry Eze 69m), 10 Luke Bottomer, 11 Alex Reid.
Unused Subs: 14 Jordan Fitzpatrick, 16 Marlon Walters, 17 Jak Jeys
Cautions: Townsend (Boro); Antonio (Rushall)
Referee: Dean Watson
Report by Chris Elsley
Stafford Rangers 0 Stourbridge 0
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Tuesday 27th September 2016
Rangers picked up their sixth draw in ten games this season with a goal-less local derby at home to Stourbridge.
It certainly didn’t look like the game was going to lack goals as Rangers played some fast flowing football in the opening exchanges and should have gone ahead in the 5th minute when George Bowerman skied over after a miscued shot from Jack Sherratt.
Sherratt wasted another good chance when he appeared to pass rather than shoot but the only players there were Stourbridge defenders.
The Glassboys came more into the game as the half went on with both Daniel Scarr and Luke Benbow failing to take half chances that came their way but the best chances still fell to the Boro and Jack Sherratt who headed wide at the near post.
Sherratt’s game was to end early due to injury and Mat Bailey was another who failed to make the second half.
Sherratt’s replacement, Rob Stevenson, had a shot cleared off the line early in the second half – former Stafford defender Brian Smikle being the saviour for the visitors.
Rangers hopes took a blow on the hour when Mitch Tolley saw red for a two footed challenge.
From then on it became more of a defensive game for the Boro although it was a sturdy one as Stourbridge rarely looked like breaching the line.
Only once was keeper Kieran Preston called upon and he passed a not too difficult test in getting low to his left to keep out Tom Tonks.
There was one other moment of concern when a collision between Stevenson and Stourbridge’s Darryl Westlake resulted in a ten minute delay while the visiting player received treatment but he was said to be ok shortly after the match.
Rangers: 1 Kieran Preston, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen, 4 Michael Townsend, 5 Mat Bailey (17 Spencer Gunnell 46m), 6 Mitch Tolley, 7 Elliot Hodge, 8 Kris Taylor, 9 Kyle Perry, 10 George Bowerman (12 Levi Reid 83m), 11 Jack Sherratt (16 Rob Stevenson 38m).
Unused Subs: 14 Izak Reid, 15 Joe Thomas.
Stourbridge: 1 Matthew Gould, 2 Kristian Green, 3 Brian Smikle, 4 Tom Tonks, 5 Darryl Westlake (14 Stuart Pierpoint 82m), 6 Daniel Scarr, 7 Drew Canavan (17 Joe Hulll 90+2m), 8 Leon Broadhurst, 9 Luke Benbow, 10 Chris Lait, 11 Brendon Hague (16 Jake Heath 68m).
Unused Subs: 12 Brad Birch, 15 Lewis Probert
Cautions: Bowen (Boro), Green (Stourbridge)
Sent Off: Tolley (Boro)
Referee: Tim Walker
Report by Chris Elsley
Spennymoor Town 1 Stafford Rangers 0
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Saturday 24th September 2016
A goal after just 5 minutes proved enough to send Rangers to defeat at Spennymoor.
Injuries and other commitments left Rangers’ squad down to the bare bones for the long trip to the North East and a tough task was made harder when Chris Mason’s ball over the top picked out Nathan Fisher who squared for Glen Taylor to slide home.
Spennymoor dominated play and went close to a second when Shane Henry’s 25 yard strike came back off the bar.
Kallum Griffiths forced Kieran Preston to save with a good strike from a similar distance while James Bowen cleared off the line after the Boro keeper had blocked Taylor’s header with his feet.
Rangers weathered the worst of the storm and were happy to go in just a goal behind at the break although Mark Anderson could have made it two on the stroke of half time but planted his header wide of the target.
The second half was a more even contest and Mat Bailey nearly forced an equaliser midway through following Kris Taylor’s corner while another Bailey header was taken under his bar by Spenny keeper Daniel Lowson.
Rangers pressed harder in the final 10 minutes. Sub Elliot Hodge had a shot deflected over before Bailey was denied once more – this time by a goal line clearance from Griffiths as the home side held on for the points.
Spennymoor: 1 Daniel Lowson, 2 Kallum Griffiths, 3 Christopher Mason, 4 Jamie Chandler, 5 James Curtis, 6 Louie Swain, 7 Robert Ramshaw, 8 Shane Henry, 9 Glen Taylor (16 Graeme Armstrong 90+5m), 10 Nathan Fisher (14 David Dowson 68m), 11 Mark Anderson (12 Craig Gott 87m).
Unused Subs: 15 Andrew Johnson, 17 Andrew Rafferty.
Rangers: 1 Kieran Preston, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen, 4 Spencer Gunnell, 5 Mat Bailey, 6 Mitch Tolley (16 Rob Stevenson 75m), 7 Izak Reid (14 Elliot Hodge 75m), 8 Kris Taylor, 9 Kyle Perry (15 Christian Dacres 60m), 10 Jack Sherratt, 11 George Bowerman.
Unused subs: 12 Levi Reid, 17 Adam Whitehouse
Referee: John Matthews
Report by Chris Elsley
Sutton Coldfield Town 1 Stafford Rangers 1
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Tuesday 20th September 2016
Rangers ended a run of three consecutive defeats coming from behind to pick up a point at Sutton Coldfield.
Former Rangers midfielder Ryan Edmunds gave the home side the lead on 13 mins when he took on the defence and after a fortunate ricochet put the ball back in his path, he drilled past Kieran Preston.
Rangers had a let off three minutes later when a long free kick from Steven Leslie came back off the bar but gradually the Boro began to show a bit more of themselves and Kyle Perry forced a save from James Wren after an exchange with Izak Reid.
Mat Bailey headed over as he rushed into meet a Kris Taylor free kick but there were still concerns at the back as an unmarked Edmunds fired into the side netting while Preston had to back track quickly to turn over a deflected shot from Leslie.
Towards the end of the half, Jermaine Johnson had two chances to bring the scores level but was unable to convert either.
Bailey forced a save from Wren but the Sutton keeper who trialled with Rangers at the start of last season was unable to keep out Perry on 72 mins after good work by sub George Cater on the right.
Rangers sensed victory and Izak Reid brought out another save from Wren while George Bowerman clipped his effort just wide.
Sutton made a push of their own in the final few minutes but Rangers held out for a share of the spoils.
Sutton Coldfield: 1 James Wren, 2 Joshua Green, 3 Steven Leslie, 4 Lee Smith, 5 Francino Francis (12 Joe Lyng 85m), 6 Scott Lycett, 7 Ryan Edmunds (15 Jeorge Smith 67m), 8 Phil Trainer, 9 Khaellem Bailey-Nicholls (16 Tyler Blake 60m), 10 Danny O’Callaghan, 11 Jean Michelle Gueyes.
Unused Subs: 14 Stephen Palmer, 17 Jason Law
Rangers: 1 Kieran Preston, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen, 4 Jermaine Johnson (14 Spencer Gunnell 46m), 5 Mat Bailey, 6 Levi Reid (12 George Bowerman 70m), 7 Jack Sherratt, 8 Kris Taylor, 9 Kyle Perry, 10 Izak Reid, 11 Elliot Hodge (17 George Cater 52m).
Unused Subs: 15 Joe Thomas, 16 Mitch Tolley
Cautions: Francis, Bailey-Nicholls (SCTFC), Bailey, Bowerman (Boro)
Referee: Matthew Smith
Report by Chris Elsley
Frickley Athletic 2 Stafford Rangers 1
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Saturday 17th September 2016
Rangers conceded two goals in the last 10 mins to suffer their third consecutive defeat, going down to bottom of the table Frickley.
Neil Kitching gave Kieran Preston his league debut but it was an error from the Rangers keeper that gifted the home side their equaliser before further defensive errors allowed Cameron Rigby to slot home the winner four minutes later.
George Bowerman gave Rangers a 16th minute lead when he ran on to a Kris Taylor free kick and scored at the second attempt after Seb Malkowski had blocked the first.
Moments earlier, Sam Griffiths had made a good block to keep out Frickley’s Nathan Curtis.
A volley from Rigby brought vociferous but unsuccessful penalty appeals after hitting Jermaine Johnson while Mat Bailey cleared off the line from Bailey Gooda but Rangers just about deserved their half time lead.
Frickley grew with confidence as the game went on although Bowerman twice missed chances to add to the score while Malkowski came quickly off his line to deny Elliot Hodge.
With 10 mins remaining, Macaulay Parkinson launched a free kick from near the half way line which Preston failed to take and the ball bounced in to the net despite Sam Griffiths' best efforts to clear.
Jack Sherratt went close to restoring Rangers’ lead a couple of minutes later but another gift from the defence led to Rigby netting Frickley’s winner on 84 mins.
Frickley: 1 Seb Malkowski, 2 Gary Stohrer, 3 Josh Grant (12 Sam Hanna 51m), 4 Luke Hinsley, 5 Bailey Gooda, 6 Rhys Meynell, 7 Cameron Rigby, 8 Nathan Valentine, 9 Nathan Curtis, 10 Andy Gascoigne (15 Macaulay Parkinson 73m), 11 Tom Guest (14 Luke Mangham 51m).
Unused subs: 16 Dan Palmer, 17 Josh Diggle's
Rangers: 1 Kieran Preston, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen, 4 Jermaine Johnson, 5 Mat Bailey, 6 Levi Reid, 7 Jack Sherratt, 8 Kris Taylor (16 Mitchell Tolley 59m), 9 Kyle Perry, 10 George Bowerman (14 Izak Reid 70m), 11 Elliot Hodge (17 Joe Thomas 86m).
Unused subs: 12 Leon Miles, 15 Spencer Gunnell.
Cautions: Stohrer (Frickley) Griffiths, Johnson, Bailey (SRFC)
Referee: Alan Bennett
Report by Chris Elsley
Stafford Rangers 1 Ashton Utd 3
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Saturday 10th September 2016
Rangers went into the game against third placed Ashton United looking to hit back after last week's FA Cup defeat against Kidsgrove.
Manager Neil Kitching again shuffled the pack with two new squad additions coming into the line up, with Mat Bailey coming in at centre back and Elliot Hodge starting on the right wing.
Rangers started positively as, in the second minute, George Cater cut in from the left and forced and early save form Terry Smith.
Rangers managed to keep possession for the opening period and on 5 minutes, Hodge cut in from the right and fed Kyle Perry, who shot from the edge of the box.
Smith got down to push the shot away but Jack Sherratt was following in to give Boro the lead from about 15 yards.
Kris Taylor then went close as Perry was brought down for a free kick and Taylor put his effort just under the bar as Smith leapt to tip over for a corner.
It took around 25 minutes for the visitors to muster a worthwhile effort as a long range effort came in but was safely gathered by Adam Whitehouse. Taylor was again in action as he forced another save from Smith as he chipped a neat effort in and the keeper again denied him. Sherratt then spurned a chance as Smith misplaced a goal kick and Sherratt gathered but could only put his effort wide.
Ashton had a couple of long range efforts that really were no trouble for Whitehouse before Gaskell gathered a cross and mishit his shot tamely at Whitehouse. Rangers again pushed forward and Perry nodded a cross back for Sherratt whose header went just under the bar but Smith yet again gathered safely.
Ashton briefly threatened before the break with another tame effort from a long range free kick, before Crowther had a decent run towards the box and as he laid the ball off, Baguley tried to get in an effort but this was blocked by Bowen and Baguley suffered an injury that saw him no further part as he was replaced by Richard Smith.
The second half started with the visitors looking more business like.
On 48 minutes an innocuous through ball fell to Mat Bailey and he miscontrolled this, only for Jack Dorney to rob him and run on to slot home Ashton's equaliser.
Rangers came back as Johnson had a back post header saved and Taylor put another free kick narrowly wide.
Rangers then made a couple of changes with Bowerman replacing Perry, while Craddock replaced Tolley. Ashton broke again and Dorney had another effort blocked.
More changes followed as Levi Reid replaced Hodge, while the visitors had Nevins replacing the busy Dorney.
On 78 minutes the visitors quietened Marston Road as a long ball split the Boro defence and, with Whitehouse advancing, Crowther simply latched onto the ball and nodded over the top and into the empty net.
As Boro tried to stem the flow and hit back Ashton found themselves on the break again and, as the ball found its way to Nevins, he found himself in clear space and squeezed a shot into the bottom corner on 82 minutes.
This knocked the wind out of Boro's sails and as they tried to gain some further consolation the visitors held out for the three points and Boro were left to wonder "what if" yet again.
Rangers: 1 Adam Whitehouse, 2 Alex Melbourne, 3 James Bowen, 4 Jermain Johnson(c), 5 Mathew Bailey, 6 Mitchell Tolley, 7 Jack Sherratt, 8 Kris Taylor, 9 Kyle Perry, 10 George Cater, 11 Elliot Hodge
Subs: 12 Leon Miles, 14 Levi Reid, 15 Sam Griffiths, 16 George Bowerman, 17 Josh Craddock
Ashton: 1 Terry Smith, 2 Stephen Mason, 3 Adam Mather, 4 Joe Connor, 5 Alex Frost, 6 Mark Lees, 7 Ryan Crowther, 8 Gary Gee, 9 Lee Gaskell, 10 Chris Baguley(c), 11 Jack Dorney
Subs: 12 Richard Smith, 14 Rhys Nevins, 15 Jody Banim, 16 Will Haining
Referee: Sarah Garratt
Report by Al Gee
Stafford Rangers 1 Kidsgrove Athletic 2
FA Cup 1st Round – Qualifying - Saturday 3rd September 2016
Rangers’ miserable FA Cup form continued as they were beaten at home by Kidsgrove Athletic.
Rangers made a number of changes to the side that drew with Nantwich on Monday with Kieran Preston, Alex Melbourne, Jermaine Johnson and Josh Craddock all making their first starts.
The visitors who play one division below Rangers and are without a league win this season, fielded five former Boro players with another four named on the subs bench.
The two sides exchanged early openings before Rangers began to look the stronger side as they maintained the pressure on the Grove goal. A cross from Melbourne flew inches beyond the reach of Craddock, Izak Reid and Rob Stevenson and the latter put in the Boro’s first shot of the game but it failed to trouble Krystian Burzynski.
Kidsgrove responded but Harry Clayton sent his shot over the top then, at the other end, Kris Taylor’s shot eluded the diving Burzynski but flashed a foot wide.
Kidsgrove opened the scoring midway through the first half when Anthony Malbon fired in after Rangers had failed to clear a free kick from Marc Grocott.
Twice in a matter of seconds, Rangers were denied an equaliser by blocks with Craddock and then George Bowerman missing out.
A free header from the unmarked Clayton could have extended the visitors’ lead but the chance went over but Rangers finished the half on the offensive but Craddock and Taylor (twice) were unable to bring the scores level.
A decent effort from Bowerman went just over but Kidsgrove extended their lead on 57 mins when Malbon scored from the spot after Mitch Tolley was penalised for a foul on David Artell.
Rob Stevenson reduced the areas ten minutes later with a smart finish from around 15 yards after a good ball from sub George Cater and Bowerman almost levelled a few minutes later but his progress into the area was halted by Artell.
Rangers pressed and Grove’s Danny Smith bravely chested the ball back to Burzynski from a couple of yards out before the Grove keeper saved well from Jake Jones.
But Jones was to be at the centre of attention in added time when he needlessly attempted to punch the ball over Burzynski. That offence would have earned him a yellow card on its own but in the melee that followed, Jones threw another punch – this time at a Kidsgrove player – and could have no complaint at the red card he was subsequently shown as he left the pitch, he took any lingering hopes with him.
Rangers: 1 Kieran Preston, 2 Alex Melbourne, 3 James Bowen, 4 Jermaine Johnson, 5 Mitchell Tolley, 6 Kris Taylor, 7 Izak Reid (16 Jake Jones 78m), 8 Jack Sherratt, 9 George Bowerman, 10 Josh Craddock (18 George Cater 55m), 11 Rob Stevenson (15 Levi Reid 89m).
Unused Subs: 12 Leon Miles, 14 Sam Griffiths, 17 Adam Whitehouse.
Kidsgrove: 1 Krystian Burzynski, 2 Danny Smith, 3 Tom Morris, 4 Ashley Hodkinson, 5 David Artell, 6 Marc Grocott, 7 Harry Clayton, 8 Ross Davidson, 9 Nick Wellecomme (12 Luke Keen 69m), 10 Anthony Malbon, 11 Joe Woolley (16 Dan Skelton 78m).
Unused subs: 14 Tyler Sims, 15 Jonathan Kapend, 17 Ryan Austin, 18 Kevin Street, 19 Tom Maddison
Cautions: Craddock, Taylor, I Reid (SRFC), Woolley, Morris (Kidsgrove)
Sent Off: Jones (SRFC)
Referee: Robbie Dadley
Report by Chris Elsley
Stafford Rangers 3 Nantwich Town 3
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Monday 29th August 2016
It was déjà-vous at Marston Road as Rangers let slip a two goal lead and saw two points slip away in the closing minutes just 48 hours after a similar heartbreak against Skelmersdale.
Nantwich’s Ryan Brooke made a dream debut, netting after just one minute when Curt Jones flicked on Sean Cooke’s free kick.
Rangers levelled on 24 mins when Kyle Perry got on the end of a clever cross from Levi Reid but his joy was marred as he picked up a hamstring injury in the process of scoring. It was the second enforced change in less than ten minutes after Adam Mitter had earlier suffered a dislocation of his shoulder.
Perry’s replacement, Jake Jones forced a save from Dave Parton but the Nantwich keeper was beaten for a second time five minutes before the interval when Michael Townsend flicked on a long throw from James Bowen leaving George Bowerman a free header.
Theo Stair fired wide for the Dabbers early in the second half but Jack Sherratt was more accurate with his shooting and squeezed a low shot into the bottom corner to put Rangers 3-1 up on 53 mins.
Bowerman couldn’t bring the ball under control as he went 1 v 1, allowing Parton to make the save before Brooke and Stair both went close for Nantwich – Townsend clearing off the line from the latter.
George Cater was denied by an excellent challenge from Ben Harrison but Nantwich kept pressing and Cooke gave his side hope with a 25 yard free kick past Adam Whitehouse with 5 minutes remaining.
Rangers missed another chance to kill the game off when Jones went clear – this time former Boro defender Andy White denying his old club with the last ditch tackle.
It was to prove a crucial challenge as two minutes into added time Stair forced his way past three defenders to fire past Whitehouse and snatch a point.
Rangers: 1 Adam Whitehouse, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen 4 Adam Mitter (17 Christian Dacres 17m), 5 Michael Townsend, 6 Mitchell Tolley, 7 Levi Reid, 8 Jack Sherratt, 9 Kyle Perry (15 Jake Jones 26m), 10 George Bowerman (14 George Cater 71m), 11 Izak Raid.
Unused Subs: 12 Alex Melbourne, 16 Rob Stevenson
Nantwich: 1 Dave Parton, 2 Andy White, 3 Ibou Touray (16 Osebi Abadaki 89m), 4 Ben Harrison, 5 Matt Bailey (14 Dave Walker 71m), 6 Curt Jones, 7 Josh Gordon (15 Josh Hancock 55m), 8 Wayne Riley, 9 Ryan Brooke, 10 Sean Cooke, 11 Theo Stair.
Unused Subs: 12 Godwin Abadaki, 13 Call Jones
Cautions: Griffiths (Boro); White, Stair (Nantwich)
Referee: Greg Rollason
Report by Chris Elsley
Stafford Rangers 4 Skelmersdale United 4
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Saturday 27th August 2016
A crazy game saw Rangers throw away two points with their third draw of the season.
Boro started with a keen intent, pressing Skem back but it was the visitors who scored from their first attack on 6 mins, as Chris Almond's shot cannoned in off Adam Mitter.
Rangers reacted brilliantly, and after half-chances from Kyle Perry and Christian Dacres were blocked, Jack Sherratt pounced on a defensive error to send George Bowerman through on goal, and he kept his composure to finish (15 mins).
Two minutes later, Rangers were in front, Sherratt again the instigator, cutting out another loose pass before feeding Bowerman who cut the ball back to Perry for a simple finish - his first for the club.
The very definition of end-to-end, Skem broke from defence and Almond blazed a glorious chance over the bar.
A third Boro goal followed as a ball from midfield found Perry running one-on-one with the keeper, who he beat with a lovely dinked finish (29 mins).
The scoring for the half was not done and Skem pulled one back just two minutes later, a simple ball through the defence caught Boro flat-footed, leaving Almond time to pick his spot.
Half time sub George Cater, almost made an immediate impact, playing a nice one-two with Perry but Fearon made the save.
Cater was not to be denied and when Perry's shot was blocked by Fearon, the youngster followed up to net the rebound (49 mins).
Skem pulled another back on 63 mins, Wright converting from a corner, before Izak Reid burst through and was only denied by Fearon's flailing foot.
Another glaring miss saw Skelmersdale sub Dan Burns find the side-netting with the goal at his mercy. Almond tested Whitehouse with a curling shot, and then Wright was allowed space to fire a powerful effort that Whitehouse tipped behind for a corner.
In the dying minutes, Cater went one-on-one with Fearon, but was denied by a good save, with Perry's follow-up also blocked. They were costly misses as Skelmersdale went straight down the other end and scored the equaliser, Burns cutting inside and curling a lovely shot into the top corner (88 mins).
Rangers: 1 Adam Whitehouse, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen 4 Leon Miles, 5 Adam Mitter, 6 Christian Dacres, 7 Rob Stevenson (14 Alex Melbourne 85), 8 Jack Sherratt, 9 Kyle Perry, 10 George Bowerman (15 George Cater 46m), 11 Izak Raid.
Subs: 12 Levi Reid, 16 Jake Jones, 17 Kieran Preston.
Skelmersdale United: 1 Martin Fearon, 2 Ben Alexandra (15 Daniel Burns 73m), 3 Shaun Holden, 4 Robert McIntosh (16 Adam Weston 69m), 5 Robert Brodie, 6 Ian Rowlands, 7 Kenny Strickland, 8 Tony Rendall, 9 Chris Almond, 10 Callum Mahoney, 11 Phil Mooney (12 Dale Wright 55m).
Subs: Dylan Vassallo, Anthony Cato.
Cautions: Dacres (SRFC); Bodie, Rendall, Mahoney (Skem)
Referee: Thomas Parsons
Report by David Broome
Corby Town 0 Stafford Rangers 0
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Wednesday 24th August 2016
Rangers remained unbeaten as they collected their first clean sheet of the season in a goalless draw at Corby Town on Wednesday night.
As stalemates go, it was moderately entertaining, with Boro totally dominating the first half, but failing to convert a succession of chances.
The hosts were much better after the break, but the only saves Adam Whitehouse had to make were from free-kicks.
Manager Neil Kitching made four changes from the side which beat Frickley Athletic, handing a debut to Adam Mitter and a full debut to Rob Stevenson.
Jake Jones missed out through injury, while Christian Dacres, Izak Reid and George Bowerman dropped to the bench, Kris Taylor and George Cater the other two players to come in.
Boro lined up in a 4-5-1, with Stevenson and Cater flanking lone front man Kyle Perry, while captain for the night Mitch Tolley stepped up from defence into midfield, replaced by Mitter.
After O'Neill Odofin collected a yellow card for an industrial tackle on Stevenson on the right wing, Taylor sent in the free-kick and Jack Sherratt flicked a header just wide.
Sherratt's more advanced position was garnering him plenty of chances, and he fired one just wide after a throw was worked from the left to the edge of the area.
His third was passed up with an air-shot, this after Perry collected the ball in the area but was crowded out.
The best chance of the opening spell saw a great bisecting ball from Taylor finds its way to Cater as a Corby defender committed himself, and the young striker hit a first-time shot that wasn't far wide.
Then Taylor delivered another free-kick which Aidan Grant punched uncertainly clear, and the ball eventually fell to Sherratt again, who dragged a left-footed shot wide.
Yet another chance fell for Sherratt, but Grant just about claimed his driven shot.
After overwhelming Corby in the first 30 minutes, Rangers’ threat was dulled somewhat in the exchanges before the break, though they almost went in ahead as a slip up from Brad-Lee Gascoigne let Perry in, but his shot was not cleanly hit and went wide of the goal.
As might have been expected, the hosts improved after the break, and had their first shot on target when Danny Draper headed a corner goalwards, and Leon Miles had to clear off the line.
Corby then won a free-kick 28 yards out and Ben Milnes warmed the palms of Whitehouse.
Boro should have scored as they broke from Corby's corner and Sherratt fed Stevenson on the right. He burst into the area and instead of shooting, tried to find Bowerman, who was not in a great position on the other side of the box, and his shot trickled goalwards, where it was easily stopped on the line.
Mitter went through a Corby attacker from behind and the hosts had a free-kick 22 yards out which Milnes curled into the hands of Whitehouse.
In literally the last throw of the dice, Bowen came across to take a throw-in on the right and hurled it into the box, where Bowerman got the faintest of touches but nodded wide.
Corby: 1 Aidan Grant, 2 Cleveland Taylor, 3 Liam Marshall, 4 Brad-Lee Gascoigne, 5 O’Neill Odofin, 6 Danny Draper (16 Jordan Crawford 81m), 7 Kurtis Revan, 8 Reece Webb, 9 Callum Ball, 10 Ben Milnes, 11 Andre Johnson (15 Michael Ogilvie 73m).
Unused Subs: 12 Luke Aridegbe, 13 Monty Parkes, 14 Sekou Kromah
Rangers: 1 Adam Whitehouse, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James bOwen, 4 Mitchell Tolley (12 Izak Reid 56m), 5 Leon Miles, 6 Adam Mitter, 7 Rob Stevenson, 8 Kris Taylor, 9 Kyle Perry (15 Christian Dacres 71m), 10 Jack Sherratt, 11 George Cater (16 George Bowerman 71m).
Unused Subs: 14 Levi Reid, 17 Alex Melbourne
Cautions: Odofin, Revan (Corby); Bowen (Boro)
Referee: Matthew Law
Report by David Broome – Staffordshire Newsletter
Stafford Rangers 3 Frickley Athletic 2
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Saturday 20th August 2016
The visitors were first to threaten as Joel Purkisss charged down an Adam Whitehouse clearance but Whitehouse gathered.
The hosts came back as Kyle Perry had a shot blocked and Izak Reid headed over. Frickley then came back as Nathan Valentine shot wide but Boro had better ideas as George Bowerman crossed to the back for Jake Jones to head in.
Rangers then stepped up as Bowerman, Perry and,Reid missed chances to increase the lead.
Frickley came to life as Purkiss and Andy Gascoigne then equalised on half time... Purkiss set up Nathan Curtis to slot home.
Frickley came out on the attack in the second half but the hosts struck back.
Firstly Bowerman had a cross cut out then Perry was nudged over and the hosts took the lead from the spot through Bowerman. Gascoigne had an effort for Frickley before Rangers responded through a free kick just over from Reid.
On 60mins the visitors drew level through a well taken effort by Tyler Williams. They then pushed on with efforts from Purkiss and Williams again.
Rangers raised their game with efforts from George Cater and Perry before taking the lead through a cross from Perry going in off a defender.
Joshua Grant saw red for Frickley and Rangers held out for what was probably a deserved win.
Star man Jack Sherratt... 4 stars
Report by Alan Gee
Stafford Rangers 1 Barwell 1
Evo-Stik League Premier Division - Tuesday 16th August 2016
Rangers’ belated start to the season had a dramatic ending but it wasn’t the finish that they wanted as former Boro defender Joe Ballinger headed home a stoppage time equaliser for the visitors.
Barwell came racing out of the blocks and the Boro had to defend for much of the opening 10 minutes but the best opportunity was headed over by Joel Bell.
Rangers established a foothold and came close when Jack Sherratt outjumped Barwell keeper Max Smith-Varnham on the edge of the area but his header was cleared away.
Leon Miles and Sherratt both had shots blocked and Christian Dacres headed straight at the keeper as Rangers continued to press.
Kyle Perry forced a flying save from Smith-Varnham with a powerful volley but it was the Leicestershire side who appeared to have broken the deadlock on 24 minutes when Declan Towers steered in a corner from Blair Anderson but the sharp eyed referee Mark Howes ruled out the effort after spotting that Towers had used hands and awarded the Barwell skipper a yellow card.
Instead it was Stafford’s Izak Reid who opened the scoring, beating the Barwell offside trap to latch on to a long ball from Jake Sherratt before slotting home on 35 mins.
Sherratt went close to adding a second just before the break with a goalbound header that was cleared off the line by Owen Story.
Sherratt missed out again early in the second half while Bowerman and Dacres also failed to make the most of chances that came their way.
Barwell had a second ‘goal’ ruled out following a foul on Whitehouse and when Tyrell Shannon-Lewis could beat the Rangers’ keeper from a couple of yards out it looked like Rangers would take the points.
But it was a soft goal that cost them. Barwell wasted a free kick on the edge of the Rangers area and the Boro broke away. But Levi Reid lost possession, Barwell countered and Ballinger was on the end of the left wing cross to snatch a share of the spoils.
Rangers: 1 Adam Whitehouse, 2 Sam Griffiths, 3 James Bowen, 4 Mitchell Tolley, 5 Leon Miles, 6 Kris Taylor (12 Levi Reid 54m), 7 Izak Reid (16 Jake Jones 88m), 8 Jake Sherratt, 9 Kyle Perry (15 Rob Stevenson 78m), 10 George Bowerman, 11 Christian Dacres.
Unused Subs: 14 Alex Melbourne, 17 George Cater
Barwell: 1 Max Smith-Varnham, 2 Dale Taylor, 3 Niall Rowe, 4 Declan Towers, 5 Joe Ballinger, 6 Brady Hickey, 7 Owen Story, 8 Jamie Towers (16 Tyrell Shannon-Lewis 61m), 9 Joel Bell (17 Amavir Sandhu 72m), 10 Nigel Julien, 11 Blair Anderson (14 Edward Nisevic 80m).
Unused Subs: 12 Joseph Sinton, 15 Chris Spencer
Cautions: L Reid, Bowerman (Boro), D Towers (Barwell)
Referee: Mark Howes
Report by Chris Elsley