25 March 2017
Alfreton Town found themselves on the wrong end of an undeserved 4-0 defeat, having created enough second half chances to warrant being in contention at Cheltenham Town's Whaddon Road on Saturday.
Having conceeded early in the game the Reds were the liklier of the teams to score the second goal until Zack Kotwica gave Gloucester City a 2-0 lead as late as the 73rd minute, before the Tigers added a late flattering brace.
Kotwica had opened the scoring in the 6th minute, sweeping home Luke Hopper's cross from six yards, then Chris Knowles (twice) and Kieran Thomas went close for the home side before Ryan Wilson's shot was blocked from a Craig Westcarr cross.
Alfreton looked as if they were going to equalise on 32 minutes when a slick move saw Liam Hearn and Mark Shelton combine before Westcarr's cross fell to Wes Atkinson, but keeper Jasbir Singh stuck out a leg to prevent the ball from entering the net.
As the interval beckoned Fabian Spiess pulled off a defiant save from Hopper, then at the other end Shelton almost turned Jack Deaman into turning the ball past his own keeper.
Both Hopper and Kotwica dragged decent chances wide before Hearn hooked over for Alfreton, and Shelton managed to find the side netting from a Westcarr delivery.
Gloucester reminded the Reds that they were in the driving seat when Ed Williams smashed the ball against the crossbar from all of 30 yards, then a central run by Callum McFadzean led to Westcarr's shot being cleared.
Singh had to block a Hearn shot on 61 minutes and Brad McGowan went close from a Westcarr free-kick, but Kotwica struck again with 17 minutes remaining to cut Alfreton's promising spell short.
Unfortunately it was Spiess who failed to hold a Luke Thomas shot that left Kotwica with a simple tap in, then five minutes later Spiess parried a stinging drive from Williams, who promptly put the rebound onto the roof of the net when it looked easier to score.
The afternoon was turning sour for the Reds, Wilson's foul on Kotwica conceeding the penalty that allowed the City striker to claim his hat-trick in the 80th minute, Hopper then allowed to roam free before slotting past Spiess for the fourth goal three minutes from time.
Alfreton Town Team:
Spiess, Richard, McGowan, Jordan, Wilson, Atkinson (Marshall 83), Monkhouse, Shelton (S.Smith 76), McFadzean, Westcarr, Hearn (Allan 83)
Subs not used : Kennedy, Heaton
Gloucester City Team:
Singh, K. Thomas, Hall, Deaman, Avery, Knowles, Hanks (McGory 83), Williams, Hopper, Kotwica (Parker 88), L.Thomas
Subs not used : King, Hamilton, Moseley
Referee: Josh Smith