Saturday 21st April 2012
Hyde FC: David Carnell, Josh Brizell, Adam Griffin, Andrew Pearson, Gianluca Havern, David Birch, Chris Worsley, David Poole (Shelton Payne), Danny Broadbent (Godwin Abadaki), Scott Spencer, Reece Gray (Tunji Moses). Subs not used: Callum Byrne, Danny Hall.
Boston United: Paul Bastock; Conor Marshall, Lee Canoville, Nathan Stainfield, Gareth Jelleyman; Ben Milnes, Ian Ross, Josh Burge; Marc Newsham, Spencer Weir-Daley (Ben Fairclough), Kallum Smith (Ryan Semple). Subs (not used): Tom Ward, Kevin Austin, James Reed.
Report by Steve Shaw
This turned out to be one of the greatest days in Hyde's history as The Tigers were crowned Conference North champions. A win was always required to stay clear at the top of the table, it was duly delivered and coupled with rivals Guiseley losing 1-0 at home to Bishop's Stortford, the title arrived at Ewen Fields with a game to spare.
As it was, Hyde got off to a fantastic start, albeit fortuitously as veteran Boston goalkeeper Paul Bastock made a hash of Scott Spencer's driven cross and the ball spilled to David Poole who couldn't miss from six yards out.
Hyde looked to stay on top and reece Gray as well as Spencer had efforts that missed the target before a perfect cross from Adam Griffin enticed Bastock to come and collect but he couldn't get near and Danny Broadbent's looping header found it's way inside the far post as Hyde doubled their lead.
Just moments later Gray burst through from midfield and found Poole who cut in from the sideline but his effort just flashed the wrong side of the post. At this point it seemed to be a case of how many Hyde would score, but Boston dug in and forced a couple of corners before being awarded a free kick on 30 minutes in dangerous territory. Ian Ross left Hyde goalkeeper David Carnell rooted to the spot as he curled his effort right into the corner to claw one back for the visitors.
The Pilgrims had an appeal for a penalty waved away before the break and also had carnell in action, tipping a long range effort away for a corner. Half Time came with niggling feeling that the home side had allowed Boston back into what should have been a comfortable game after the first twenty minutes.
The news that title rivals Guiseley were a goal down came through at the break but given their recent comebacks from similar positions, not a great deal was read into that.
The second half saw Boston remain a threat but the main chances fell to The Tigers with Bastock using his legs to save a stinging effort from Gray, Scott Spencer bursting clear but shooting straight at Bastock and then Danny Broadbent firing a lovely shot just wide of the target. Ian Ross came closest for Boston with another free kick that had Carnell backpedalling to tip over the crossbar.
The game was over as a contest on 83 minutes as Hyde got forward and the ball fell to Shelton Payne six yards out, Nathan Stainfield attempted to tackle the forward and whilst he made contact with the ball, he had already gone through the Hyde man leaving him on the floor and the referee pointed to the spot. Scott Spencer made no mistake and sparked wild scenes in front of the shed with his acrobatic celebration.
Straight away Boston had another penalty claim turned down and Ben Milnes lost his head, no doubt incensed by the decision Hyde had just received, mouthing to the referee and was sent off for a second booking.
Shelton Payne burst away down the left in stoppage time and finished across Bastock into the corner to cap off a great season at Ewen Fields and make the scoreline 4-1. It was a little harsh on Boston who had played their part in the game and the scoreline was more comprehensive than the game had been.
The side waited on the pitch as news from Nethermoor came through, and after a few minutes Hyde were announced as Blue Square Bet North champions 2011/12. The scenes at Ewen Fields will never be forgotten as team, management and supporters merged into a sea of jubilation as they looked towards Conference Premier football for the first time in the clubs history.
Gary Lowe, speaking to Luke Edwards, hailed his side’s efforts over the season as Hyde created history and were promoted to the Conference National for the first time in their history:
The success has been down to lots and lots of hard work by the players and the people behind the scenes. Never in my wildest dreams did I expect this at the start of the season and it was great to clinch the title today in front of our own fans.
Lowe also paid tribute to their closest rivals in the table, Guiseley:
I have massive respect for what Guiseley have done this season and the way they have chased us. Steve Kittrick has done a fantastic job but we have managed to hold our nerve.