10:53am Sunday 20th April 2014
By Ross McLean
LEADING marksman Danny Mitchley made his presence felt on the scoresheet with two second-half strikes as Kendal recorded a convincing victory against New Mills at Church Lane.
Mike Rushton gave the Mintcakes an interval lead before Mitchley took centre stage after the break – ending a four-game goalscoring drought in the process.
New Mills centre-half Daniel Shaw received his marching orders for a second yellow card as Ricky Mercer settled matters with a headed goal.
The result also represented Kendal’s first clean sheet on the road since a 6-0 defeat of Mickleover Sports back in September 2011.
Dave Foster selected the same side which defeated Harrogate Railway Athletic the previous week although Jack Smith returned to the bench after recovering from a gashed leg.
The Millers have failed to replicate their play-off form of last season but came into the fixture with four wins from five games after a particularly barren spell since December.
The home side made the initial running and while long-range shots from James Hampson and Jacob Wood sailed wide it signalled their early intent.
Kendal were struggling to create anything of note in the attacking third and midway through the half were indebted to keeper Danny MacDonald for keeping the scores level.
Latching onto a forward ball which was misjudged by the visiting defence, Wes Bancroft – with three goals in as many games – saw his effort smothered by the former Lancaster City stopper.
However, after Mercer’s header from a Danny Coid free-kick was comfortably claimed by New Mills keeper Peter Collinge, Kendal took the lead on 41 minutes.
Mitchely’s knock down from another Coid set-piece was met by Rushton who found the bottom corner from 12 yards to score his third goal in two matches.
Former Altrincham forward Mitchley missed the target from six yards before the break while shortly after the re-start Collinge produced a finger-tip save to repel a Rushton header.
MacDonald kept the home side at bay by twice denying Kiarno Samms from close range – pivotal saves as Kendal came to the fore in the final 20 minutes.
The Mintcakes wrapped up proceedings with three quick-fire goals, Mitchley pouncing on a half chance on 71 minutes to find the corner of the net from just inside the area.
Moments later, Colin Watson combined with Smith on the right flank as Mitchley notched his 26th strike of the campaign with a left-footed drive from 20 yards.
And maximum points were sealed after 79 minutes as New Mills were reduced to ten men following Shaw’s second booking of the afternoon for pulling back Mitchley.
From the resulting Smith free-kick, an unmarked Mercer powered home a header from inside the six-yard box for his second goal this year in Kendal colours.
Substitute Aaron Fleming, Rob Wilson and Smith all came close to adding further gloss to the scoreline as the visitors ultimately ran out comfortable winners.
New Mills: Peter Collinge, Kiarno Samms, Danny Caldecott, Daniel Grimshaw (c) (Ryan Hopper 70), Danny Shaw, Jacob Wood, Michael Smith, Dominic Welsby (Robert O’Brien 70), James Hampson, Wes Bancroft, Danny Hewitt (Raducio King 74). Subs not used: Rhys Nevins, Ryan Pugh
Kendal Town: Danny MacDonald, Colin Watson, Danny Coid, Warren Beattie (c), Ricky Mercer, Rob Wilson, Jamie Pattinson, Craig Carney, Danny Mitchley (Kevin Brown 79), Mike Rushton (Aaron Fleming 79), Gary Basterfield (Jack Smith 63). Subs not used: Ricardo Egidi, Michael Stringfellow
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