Moles step up their game to hold promotion-chasing Rovers
Aylesbury FC produced a much-improved performance on Saturday to hold promotion-chasing Barton Rovers to an entertaining 3-3 draw.
With the two teams at opposite ends of Division One Central, many would have fancied Barton to inflict more misery on the out-of-form Moles who have won only once in the league since October.
And things didn’t start well for FC who found themselves behind after just four minutes when Connor Calcutt’s well-placed header gave Rovers the dream start.
But the lead was short-lived as Aylesbury responded impressively and levelled within 46 seconds. A mistake by Barton from the kick-off allowed ex-Rovers player Josh Bamford a free run through the middle before he kept his cool to slot beyond onrushing goalkeeper Tom Coulton.
Numerous chances then came and went for Barton as Elliot Baily scuffed a shot wide on the half-hour mark before the half-time whistle signalled the end of a scrappy yet open opening 45 minutes.
As per the first-half, Rovers made a flying start to the second period as Calcutt spurned a golden chance when denied by FC keeper Ashley Jenkins before Jimmy Hartley was also thwarted in his bid to put the home side back in front.
Eventually Bartin did retake the lead and the goal came on 55 minutes when a powerful Hartley shot found the back of the net and left the Jenkins with no chance.
Calcutt then extended the lead five minutes later and at this point you’d have been forgiven for thinking it was a case of how many Barton fancied.
But Aylesbury refused to buckle and grabbed themselves a lifeline just after the hour-mark through Ben Bateman, who finished well
That breathed new life into the game, and only five more minutes had passed when Bamford again came back to haunt his former club when capitalising on poor defending to net his second of the day and bring FC level.
The game could have tilted either way in the remaining 20 minutes as both teams created chances, however neither could convert, meaning a share of the spoils.
Whilst Barton might consider it as two points dropped, Aylesbury were full value for their point which should give them a lift as they bid to stop the rot and climb the table.
The Moles are currently 20th and faced Barton again last night, Tuesday, in the League Cup at Haywood Way.