Stockport Town overcame Greater Manchester rivals Prestwich Heys on Wednesday evening with a well-earned 1-0 away win at Sandgate Road.
Mark German was the man on the scene to score the only goal of the game, with the entire Lions squad putting on a disciplined performance.
Town came into this game on the back of a 4-3 home loss to Daisy Hill and they almost found themselves behind in the opening minute but Paul Tierney’s lobbed effort went over the bar.
Stockport got themselves into the game and nearly found the back of the net themselves early on as German came close at the back post following great work and a cross from Kiarno Samms on the right wing.
Prestwich were forced into an early substitution as Adam Tse replaced the injured Lee Bruce and Tse came close after coming on, lashing a shot across the goal mouth as Town keeper Jacob Luty could only watch.
Samms was working well down the right channel and 20 minutes in drove forward 30-yards before cutting inside and firing just wide of the post.
At this stage it was becoming to and fro as Tierney came close once again for Heys, finding space at the near post before firing a shot at goal which was well saved by the feet of Luty.
Just minutes later and the Lions had rattled the Prestwich crossbar. Liam Bennion drove forward from his defensive line and smashed a shot on the volley which cannoned off the bar and out of play.
The visitors did have the ball in the back of the net in the 31st minute but James Hampson’s tap-in was ruled offside against Edward Driver who supplied the pass.
With 36 minutes on the clock Town finally broke the deadlock in what was turning into a thoroughly entertaining match. German once again popped up at the back post but this time cooly slotted the ball home to give Stockport the lead going in at the break.
The second half began just like the first had, with Prestwich almost finding the back of the net early on. This time it was Tse who failed to capitalise on an open goal after Luty missed the high-ball amongst miscommunication in the Town defence.
With 56 minutes on the clock Driver came close to doubling Town’s lead after being played through on goal by Hampson but the striker fired wide of the post.
Ten minutes later and Driver once again was gifted the opportunity to strike a second for Town, this time Jake Pollard played him through but his shot was high over the crossbar.
There was a long five minute delay in the match from the referee after he sent off one of the Prestwich Heys coaching staff, with the referee refusing to resume play until the Heys official had returned to the changing room, much to the dismay of Heys fans and players.
Daniel White found himself through on goal for Heys late in the match but was denied by a fantastic save by the on-rushing Luty. The Lions keeper was not to be denied his clean-sheet.
Stockport ran down the clock in the final few minutes of the game and despite Heys’ best efforts, the visitors held on to secure a vital away win.
Next up for Calum Sykes’ Stockport is another away trip to Eccelshall, a side that they have already beaten 7-1 on two occasions this season.