• Peter Scherer

Mickleover and Buxton share the spoils

Two in-form sides couldn't be separated on Tuesday night as Buxton and Mickleover drew 2-2 at the Tarmac Silverlands Stadium.

Confidence was high in both camps, with Mickleover having won three league games in a row and Buxton third in the table.

Mickleover began well and in the first five minutes Paddy Webb found himself through but his first attempt was wide of the mark.

There was a good chance for Buxton in the box shortly afterwards, but Steve Brogan missed out, before Callum Hawkins had to pull out all the stops to make a brilliant diving save from Warren Clarke following a poor clearance from the Mickleover defence.

Clarke wasted a good chance after being set up by Diego De Girolamo after 17 minutes and four minutes later a glancing header from Reece King was easily taken by Hawkins.

Mickleover were then given a free-kick which was placed into the box with perfection by Kenny Agustien, leaving to Phil Watt to rise above the home defence and send a powerful header into the roof of the net for 1-0 after 22 minutes.

Action from Buxton (in white) against Mickleover. Photo: Mickleover FC.

Agustien had a try for a second himself, with a powerful long range shot, before Buxton retaliated with a long shot well over the bar.

It was still end to end with both sides having a share of the attack. Beavon’s 31st minute shot was just wide of the post, but a minute later the referee gave the first of what Mickleover felt were dubious penalty decisions after a combined James Butler and Watt airborne challenge was deemed to have fouled the Buxton striker.

De Girolamo made no mistake from the spot kick and it was 1-1.

Buxton’s King was then lucky to stay on the pitch after a horrendous tackle on Alex Morris left the Sports wing back in need of treatment.

Sam Wedgbury put a shot just over the Mickleover bar from a long throw and Hawkins was at full stretch again from a 42nd minute Buxton free-kick.

But Beavon made the most of another break to send Webb clear. The striker sent a precise pass into the box where Dec Bacon was on hand to make it 2-1 to Mickleover with a minute left to half time.

However, only a minute later referee Mr Riley deemed a challenge from Bennett to be another penalty, which De Girolamo again struck home for 2-2.

Into the second half and Buxton could easily have gone a goal up on 50 minutes when Butler was dispossessed on the edge of the box and a Buxton striker was left one on one with Hawkins, but he decided to pass and the chance was lost.

There were a number of long clearance’s sending Webb on runs, he had two shots within a couple of minutes, but both wide of the mark.

There was a Mickleover penalty appeal in the 56th minute, when Bacon’s shot was blocked by what appeared to be a defender’s arm, but the referee wasn't interested.

Webb continued to try his luck and sent a shot cannoning off the post on the hour as the luckless striker still seeks his first goal of the season.

Continuing a slow and gradual build up Buxton tried again, but the end result was King firing high and wide, only for a quick switch of play to leave Webb with just the keeper to beat, but he failed to connect.

Beavon went close again after 64 minutes, but shortly afterwards was flattened by a wild challenge from Brogan. It could easily have been another red card, but like the first it was yellow.

Sensing the decisions continuing to go their way, Buxton piled the pressure on, with a header just wide from a free kick, followed by an incredible diving save from Hawkins following a shot from James Walshaw.

Watt then had to clear off the line in a goal mouth scramble, before the final whistle signalled the end of a hard-fought encounter.