Clipstone hit the woodwork twice and missed some easy chances ahead of suffering a first league defeat since February.
The game was rued with missed chances and a point would’ve been a fair result before Stephen Bromley scored the only goal which sealed Harrogate Railway’s win.
Ian Cotton made three changes after the 3-2 victory to Handsworth Parramore with Rob Paling, Harry Bircumshaw & Luke Thomas replacing Keenan Leeds, Brandon Williams and Kier Webster.
Despite seeing a lot of possession in the early minutes Clipstone only managed the single opportunity in the fifth minute when Gareth Curtis made a positive run shooting from the edge of the box only for the Harrogate goalkeeper James Webster to spill the shot into the path of Luke Walker who saw his reaction shot hit the crossbar and bounce out into the arms of a relieved Webster.
Clipstone & Harrogate both struggled to create any real dangerous chances until the 35th minute. It was through quick thinking from Gary Doncaster to launch the ball upfield and found Luke Walker who seemed to know exactly what he was going to do as soon as he picked the ball up. Driving from the half way line the Harrogate defence
looked nervous to make a committed challenge. Walker struck his shot fiercely from the edge of the 18 yard box and stung the hands of the Harrogate goalkeeper Webster.
Boosted by the previous attack Clipstone tried to take momentum. The ever energetic Ryan Hawley found Curtis out wide. Curtis continued his run down the wing before swinging in a dangerous ball to a unsuspecting Rob Paling who blasted the ball over the Harrogate stand.
Half time 0-0
After a half with limited chances I’m sure most people around the ground were confident the game would end scoreless unless it was through a mistake or a quality bit of play.
However, Harrogate started off a much livelier team and Roy Fogarty caused Clipstone plenty of problems. His distance shot whistled wide of Doncaster’s goal and the noise from the home fans increased. Fogarty again was involved in troubling the centre halves when Bromley also saw a volley go wide.
Clipstone manager Ian Cotton noticed the Harrogate were dominant and made the necessary change bringing off Hawley for Brendon Williams.
The Cobras then seemed to hit back. Tim Gregory managed to get hold of the ball and drive his way up the field, finding his pass to Curtis who shot just over the bar.
Clipstone were dominant but clear chances were hard to come by. Next was a freak effort from Brendon Williams. What seemed like a cross was blocked and rose high in the air looping down towards the goal which found back peddling Webster only being saved only by the crossbar.
The ball was in the net on the 65 minutes when Gregory placed into the bottom corner but the linesman had his flag up for offside.
For the final 20 minutes Leeds replaced Paling as Cotton went for the win. The pressure continued both ways when Curtis’ shot was saved by the feet of Webster before Burbanks was ruled to have fouled winger Lewis Riley on the edge of the box. The resulting free kick was hit over the bar not troubling Doncaster.
The pressure was still coming from both teams and just as added time was indicated there was more drama. Lewis Riley’s brilliant cross was met by the head of Stephen Bromley who directed the ball into the Clipstone goal to get the winner. You could feel the relief from the Harrogate faithful as that goal secured another year’s status in the NCEL premier league.