RED-HOT BEAST A STROLL IN THE

The Non-League Football Paper - - NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH - By John Feather­stone

YORK CITY climbed back into the play-off po­si­tions for the first time since mid-Novem­ber fol­low­ing a home tri­umph over Brad­ford Park Av­enue.

Jon Parkin’s 25th goal of the sea­son and an ef­fort from sub Amari Mor­gan-Smith, who is the Min­ster­men’s dis­tant sec­ond-top marks­man on five, se­cured the points for the hosts, even though Bootham Cres­cent old boy Adam Boyes grabbed a con­so­la­tion in stop­page time.

Vic­tory saw York ex­tend their long­est run of con­sec­u­tive wins since April 2014 to a fourth game, while Av­enue dropped out of the top seven af­ter los­ing their first league game on the road since Oc­to­ber.

Home sport­ing di­rec­tor Dave Pen­ney was pleased with another three points, but felt the per­for­mance was patchy.

“We were good at times, but I felt we could have been bet­ter at other points,” he said. “Win­ning four games on the trot quickly moves you up the ta­ble, though, with the games com­ing thick and fast now, so we must look to see what Telford did shape, for­ma­tion and per­son­nel wise and get ready for Tues­day night.”

Former York winger Oli John­son had seen a loop­ing header bounce off the top of the cross­bar and Jamie Spencer forced a low parry from home keeper Adam Bartlett, be­fore Parkin broke the dead­lock on 41 min­utes.

Run­ning on to Aidan Con­nolly’s per­fectly-weighted ball, Parkin – known as the Beast – beat Av­enue’s Stephen Drench with a clin­i­cal, side-footed fin­ish from ten yards.

Af­ter the break, Spencer again went close with a 25-yard drive, but Martin Gray’s men dou­bled their ad­van­tage when skip­per Sean New­ton sent in an ex­cel­lent cross from the left touch­line and Mor­gan-Smith pounced from a mat­ter of inches on 65 min­utes.

To their credit, the vis­i­tors re­fused to sur­ren­der and Boyes was only de­nied by an ath­letic Adam Bartlett save when the York keeper clawed away his closerange header.

On 92 min­utes, Boyes did get on the score­sheet when he tapped in John­son’s cross from the left at the far post fol­low­ing a mis­take by de­fender Hamza Bencherif.

Away boss Mark Bower con­fessed that mas­ter marks­man Parkin proved the big dif­fer­ence be­tween the two sides.

“I didn’t think there was any­thing in the game and thought we were the bet­ter side for large spells, but they were just that bit bet­ter than us in the box,” Bower said. “You have to take your hat off to some­body like Jon Parkin. He had one chance and ended up with one goal, which is ruth­less.” STAR MAN: Aidan Con­nolly (York City) EN­TER­TAIN­MENT: ★★★★★

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