Willie Clemons extends goal streak as promotion-chasing Stowmarket Town drop vital points
Willie Clemons netted his second goal in as many outings to extend his phenomenal scoring form but he and his Stowmarket Town team-mates were held to a 1-1 draw at home to Maldon & Tiptree in the Isthmian League North on Tuesday night.
The Bermuda forward gave the hosts the lead in the 48th minute at Greens Meadow after controlling a long pass in the penalty area and firing in the bottom left-hand corner for his fourth goal in five outings and tenth of the season in all competitions.
Clemons’s compatriot Reggie Lambe and Josh Mayhew both went close to doubling Town’s advantage and killing the game off in the 80th minute. After Lambe’s initial effort was parried out, the visitors’ goalkeeper Tommy Dixon-Hodge thwarted Mayhew’s follow-up on the loose ball.
The missed opportunity came back to haunt the home side as Shamari Barnwell grabbed the equaliser a minute later when he ran on to a bouncing ball and lobbed it over advancing Town goalkeeper James Bradbook and into the empty net.
Clemons had a chance to restore Town’s lead in stoppage time but blasted Tommy Smith’s precision cross over the bar at the far post to leave the teams deadlocked.
Lambe, who also had a free-kick saved in the first half, was booked in the 87th minute and replaced a minute later.
The result was another blow to the title hopes of Town who have now gone without a win in their last four league outings.
With five games left to play, Paul Musgrove’s team remain third in the standings, seven-points behind leaders Aveley and two adrift of second-placed Canvey Island with a game in hand over the teams above them.
The eventual league winners will gain automatic promotion while the next four teams will contest a play-off for the remaining promotion spot.
Town have not won in the league since edging fellow promotion hopefuls Grays Athletic 1-0 at Greens Meadow on March 12, with Clemons grabbing the game winner.
At that stage of the campaign they were on a nine-game unbeaten run and trailed then leaders Canvey Island by a point.
However, since then Musgrove’s team has dropped vital points heading down the final stretch of the season which has hindered their title bid.