MELLOR 1 HOOLEY BRIDGE CELTIC 1
Mellor Firsts rued missed chances in a 1-1 home draw with Hooley Bridge Celtic.
But had the visitors not missed a last minute penalty Mellor's profligacy might have been more costly.
Mellor played well in patches with the returning Paul Swann adding an attacking threat from left back, linking well with Danny Leibrick.
Jonny Cooke, too, worked hard and caused Hooley problems.
Mellor's first real chance came on 12 minutes when a misjudgement by a Hooley defender put Ben Wade clear.
But a last ditch block denied him as he pulled the trigger.
Two minutes later Mark Oldham, who otherwise had a solid game, gave away a cheap corner.
Mellor were asleep as Hooley played a short ball and the resulting cross was headed out for a second corner.
Mellor conceded a third corner from the kick but Hooley could not profit.
On 20 minutes the visitors took the lead. The centre forward got his shot away but although Luke Smith made a good save the ball had enough momentum to spin off him into the net.
A minute later Mellor equalized. Ben Beer fed Dave Whelan who moved the ball on on for Chris Coram to hit a crisp drive from 23 yard that flew just inside the left hand post.
On 30 minutes Mellor produced another flowing move. Cooke found Leibrick who allowed Coram to feed Hilton for a shot just over the bar.
Two minutes later Wade had the ball in the net after the keeper fumbled a free kick but was ruled offside.
Wade tried to score with an acrobatic scissor kick on 35 minutes but saw his shot blocked.
Mellor passed the ball well but played too many speculative long passes into the channel.
As the game wore on Hooley Bridge were pegged back but were always dangerous on the counter.
Luke Smith made a good save on 50 minutes. On 61 minutes Leibrick set Dave Whelan away inside the box but his mazy run ended with a shot into the side netting.
A minute later Leibrick set up Ben Wade who should have scored from just six yards but he shot wide.
Ben Beer saved Mellor on 65 minutes with a desperate tackle as a Hooley forward prepared to shoot.
The visitors then spurned a good chance, firing wide from a good position.
On 70 minutes Mellor almost profited from an own goal as Coram and Whelan worked a short corner and Whelan's shot was sliced dangerously close to a post by a defender and out for another flag kick.
On 75 minutes Dom Simpson replaced Cooke and Leibrick moved to the right wing.
Mellor then had a sustained spell of pressure but could not test the Hooley keeper.
On 84 minutes Dave Moss came on for Jack Hilton and Dan Byrne replaced Paul Swann at left back.
On 89 minutes Luke Smith flew from his goal to parry away a forward pass as a forward shaped to shoot but his challenge also took out the Hooley player and the referee pointed to the spot.
Mellor's luck was in as the taker put the shot wide of the left hand post.
Simpson and Coram both put drives over the bar in the four minutes of injury time, so the spoils were shared.
The Seconds had no game. The Thirds beat Bury Amateurs Reserves to go top of Division B a point above Staly Lions. Kev Murray(2) and Lewis Jeffs were the scorers.
The Fourths lost 3-1 away at Spurley Hey. Man of the Match Danny Roberts scored.
Below pictures from the Firsts against Hooley Bridge and then pictures by Mark Jordan of Marple Bridge Photography of Mellor 4ths at Spurley Hey.
Mellor pile on the pressure
Danny Leibrick puts in a cross
Ben Wade fires wide from six yards
Hooley miss a last minute penalty
Ant Brown challenges for a header
Telfer on the run
Rob Jordan heads for goal
Telfer puts a tackle in
Nathan Fitzpatrick evades a challenge
Rob Jordan and James Robinshaw attack the ball