04 February 2017
Nicky Law was given an emotional farewell by Alfreton Town fans at Gainsborough on Saturday, every one of them lining up to shake hands and hug their manager, who was leaving the club after a highly successful ten years.
A superb and somewhat vital 2-0 win for the Reds took second stage as grown men and women fought back tears in the most sensational scenes since Alfreton won promotion the the Conference National League in 2011.
Craig Westcarr set up Law's swansong victory with a goal in each half of a game the Reds dominated throughout, completing their first double of the season, although it was a third ifyou include the FA Trophy win.
His first after eight minutes followed a neat back-heel by Tom Allan from Mark Shelton's cross. Westcarr slotting the ball past George Willis from eight yards.
A second goal came 14 minutes after the interval following a bizarre sequence of play, which stemmed from a Niall Heaton throw. an unfortunate deflection set up Damelle Bailey-King for a withering central run which needed clearing by the Alfreton defence. Terry Kennedy's hack upfield then falling to Westcarr who side stepped a defender before once again leaving Willis flailing from eight yards.
If there was to be any criticism cast upon Alfreton's performance on such a significant afternoon then it was their lack of clinical finishing, particularly from Westcarr who could have bagged a nap hand, seeing a shot diverted behind from Paul Marshall's 22nd minute cross, then glancing a header wide from the same source and going close with a free-kick that lacked power.
Allan also went close in the 19th minute with an angled drive that Willis superbly tipped over, then Ioan Evans somehow blocked Shelton's shot in front of goal before Gainsborough eventually responded with Jordan Thewlis dragging a decent chance across the face of goal.
Bailey-King fired wide after advancing rapidly as the second half began, but the Reds were soon assuming control once more with a period of pressure that concluded with the second goal.
However they were fortunate to escape unscathed six minutes after consolidating their lead, a Thewlis drive parried by Fabian Spiess before falling fractionally behind the supporting Matt Thornhill.
Westcarr could not produce enough power to beat Willis from his favoured distance of eight yards, following a neat 74th minute move that had involved Shelton, Adam Priestley and Andy Monkhouse, then Priestley fired over nine minutes from time after engineering a clear scoring chance.
Alfreton Town Team:
Spiess, R.Wilson, McGowan, Kennedy, Heaton, Nyoni (Priestley 64), Monkhouse, Marshall, Allan, Shelton, Westcarr (Clayton 79).
Subs not used : Hearn, Gascoigne, Jordan
Gainsborough Trinity Team:
Wiilis, Roma (Rothery67), Lacey, L.Wilson, Evans, Picton, Bailey-King (Reid 73), Thornhill, Worsfold, Thewlis, Davie ( Chilaka 57)
Subs not used : Smith, Quinn
Referee: Joe Hull