Blue Square Bet Premier
Saturday 16 April 2011 - Blundell Park - kick off 3.00pm
||Robinson, Simpson, Jombati, Jones (c), Clough, Burnell, Canham, Connolly (Rollo 45), Watkins (Mackie 69), Murray, Phillips. subs not used: Harris, Lennox, Webb.
|man of the match:
||Murray (80), Clough (90)
||Jombati (3), Rollo (65)
||R Wigglesworth, S Millar, A Tonks
|league position: 13th
||next match: Histon (H)
Report taken from
Two goals in the last ten minutes, plus a dramatic Ryan Robinson penalty save, helped Bath City come away from Blundell Park with an impressive result for the second successive season.
City famously beat Grimsby Town on home turf in the FA Cup last season but looked on course for defeat this time round when Alan Connell struck twice in the first 23 minutes.
But Scott Murray's free-kick gave the visitors a lifeline in the 80th minute and Charlie Clough completed the latest in a long line of City comebacks when he equalised in stoppage time.
However, it looked like it would be in vain when Connell was fouled by Gethin Jones at the other end but the Grimsby striker's penalty was brilliantly saved by Robinson.
City have had some late comebacks and late victories this season but probably none will stick more in the memory than the dramatic events at the end of this match.
With ten minutes to go the visitors looked as though they were slipping to a third successive defeat as, after games at Gateshead, Darlington and Mansfield, their tiring circumnavigation of England began to draw to a close.
Grimsby, who had committed a succession of niggly fouls all afternoon, then upended substitute Hector Mackie 20 yards from goal. Up stepped Murray, who somehow slid the ball through a crowd of players and beyond the diving Steve Croudson in the Grimsby goal.
Suddenly City were re-energised and went close to equalising when Sido Jombati, with his back to goal, delivered an overhead kick which the diving Croudson did well to save.
With 89 minutes gone, and to the delight of their supporters and to howls of derision from the home crowd, City drew level. This time another free-kick saw Murray change direction and float the ball to the far post for Clough to head home his second goal in City colours.
Manager Adie Britton, assistant Lee Howells and the remaining substitutes rose to a man in recognition of their side's achievements.
However, with the game already two minutes into stoppage time, the visitors' hearts came to a collective standstill as referee Richard Wriggelsworth awarded what, at best, looked a doubtful penalty.
Connell stepped up to complete his hat-trick but City keeper Robinson dived the right way and the home crowd erupted in anger at their side's continued failure to win at Blundell Park.
Earlier in the game it had been a story of Grimsby dominance. Just ten minutes were on the clock when Rob Eagle curved the ball in on Robinson's goal. The City keeper came but failed to collect and Connell was on hand at the far post to tap in.
With the home crowd sensing the tide had turned in their favour they roared their team forward and got their reward on 22 minutes. Lively ex-Bristol City man Lee Peacock raced down the right before putting in an inch-perfect cross for Connell to volley home his 24th league goal of the season.
From then on, Grimsby maintained their control of the game but took their foot of the gas somewhat as the clock counted down. City made some crucial substitutions, bringing on Jim Rollo at half-time for Adam Connolly and pushing Jombati into midfield. With 20 minutes to go Mackie was also introduced into the fray.
The changes, while not decisive, did give some added impetus to the attack, with the lively Jombati in particular pushing forward in midfield and a good cross from the tall Portugese man was narrowly missed by Lee Phillips coming in on goal.
However, although City pressed forward, few home or away fans would have predicted the drama of the closing stages.