Stone Old Alleynians 2-2 Bilston Town Community

Stone Old Alleynians let slip a two-goal lead as they were held at home by fellow mid-table side Bilston Town Community.

Matt Thomas’s second half brace had looked like seeing the Old Boys home, but two late strikes from the visitors earned them a share of the points.

Manager Matt Smith was philosophical about his side’s result: “We were very good for long periods of the game but obviously when you’re two-nil up you expect to see the game out. We have drawn 10 out of 28 league games this season, which isn’t good enough. We will keep working to make sure we improve on the details we know will turn our draws into wins.”

Thomas came close to opening the scoring for Alleynians early in the first-half when he met Jimmy Lee’s cross at the near post, but was only able to power the header straight at Jordan Ellis in the Bilston goal.

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Matt Thomas loops his header home to put Stone ahead

The visitors came close to taking the lead themselves thanks to a counter attack that saw Roland Agbor go clear but he saw his effort go wide after he had rounded goalkeeper Cameron Bliss.

Bliss was again called into action to save from Lewis Archer, before his opposite number Ellis was called into action by Lee and Danny Heard.

Matt Thomas was sent clear by Lee early in the second half but a poor touch from the frontman as he raced clear allowed Ellis to save, however the story was different moments later when Thomas looped his header over the Bilston keeper from Lee’s corner to put the Old Boys in front.

A jinking run from the impressive Lee nearly saw the home side double their lead, but the winger saw his effort come back off the post.

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Jimmy Lee beats the keeper but not the post

It wasn’t to be long before the lead was doubled however, as Thomas latched onto a Danny Heard flick-on before powering home the finish to put his side firmly in control.

Thomas nearly secured the match-ball, when he cut inside the area and fired his shot low, but Ellis saved superbly before Sam Wilson turned the rebound against the post.

The visitors got themselves back into the game after left-back Ryan Williams advanced with the ball and linked up with Matt Barnett to play in Agbor who made no mistake from 10-yards.

And the Old Boys were left to rue their missed opportunities when Bilston drew level with 10 minutes to go. Barnett’s through-ball picked out the run of Jayden McCalla who got to the byline before cutting the ball back to Taimoor Hussain who smashed the ball home.

Stone rallied late on, and came close when Sam Wilson pounced on a loose clearance from Ellis but was unable to keep his effort on target, before Jack Tomlinson saw his effort with the last kick of the game ruled out by the offside flag after he had met Cameron Sinclair’s cross.

Stone OA: Bliss, Hewitt (Heath), Dibden, Whalley, Davies, Griffiths (c), Sinclair, Wilson, Lee (Pope), Thomas (Tomlinson), Heard

Unused: Kay