A mixed Easter weekend ended with defeat with 10 men followed by derby victory as Sleaford Town’s campaign approaches its end.
A depleted Sleaford travelled to Northampton on Saturday with just the bare XI, and matters were made worse after just 20 minutes when they lost keeper Regan Start to a red card.
Despite the adversity, Town’s remaining 10 men worked hard against Chenecks and were only narrowly beaten 2-1.
Perhaps of little surprise is that more red cards were to follow on Easter Monday’s derby with Boston Town at Eslaforde Park as both sides finished with 10 men and Sleaford with the spoils.
Town hit the front midway through the first half when Tom Siddons smashed in from the penalty spot.
Home keeper Regan Start made a double-save to preserve the lead and the hosts capitalised four minutes before the break on a scorching afternoon.
It was a moment that will live long in the memory of Ewan Armstrong as the youngster nodded in his first senior goal after the Boston keeper was beaten to the cross by Tom Siddons.
Both sides started the second half slowly in the energy-sapping heat, but the temperature rose still higher when Sleaford’s Ben Newman was sent off for an off-the-ball incident moments after the Town full-back thought he had been elbowed.
Jamie Shaw’s mood would not have been improved minutes later when Boston halved the deficit, second-half sub Ollie Pinner tapping in after the ball came back off the crossbar.
Yet having hauled themselves back into the game, the visitors shot themselves in the foot with 20 minutes left when Fraser Bayliss was sent off for his second yellow card.
Sleaford survived a nervous final five minutes to claim a win which keeps them on the shoulders of 12th-placed Leicester Nirvana.
The Green Army conclude their season on Saturday with a trip to sixth-placed Cogenhoe United (kick-off 3pm).