The Lockmen slipped to an undeserved defeat at the hands of old rivals Dudley.
The Lockmen started the brighter with Matt Dorgan lobbing just wide on two minutes for the visitors. A minute later and emergency goalkeeper Graham Ashton was called into action to save with his feet. Brodie Williams then fired across the face of goal for The Robins and eventually out for two successive corners, the second of which Simon Laidley headed clear. Lee Smith was then played through on goal but the ball ran through and reached Ashton first.
The home side then had a 13th minute free-kick which was played into the box by Alex Perry, Ashton palmed clear under pressure. The Lockmen then threatened the home goal first through a cross from Simon Larmor, which was headed clear, and then by Jason Hewitt’s spectacular overhead kick which flew directly at home custodian Matt Watts on 16 minutes. Two minutes later the much travelled Aaron Lloyd was played through but he fired across goal and away from danger.
On 19 minutes Dorgan did well to win a header and find Hewitt who was unceremoniously dumped to the ground for a 35 yard free-kick. Captain for the night Adam Holliday fired directly at the keeper. Lloyd broke through again on 21 minutes but Ashton stood up well and blocked his attempt. Lloyd then hit a 30 yard snapshot, but again it was directly to Ashton. Kris Wedderburn then chased a long ball which Ashton reached easily.
The Lockmen came more into the game and Amarpreet Dulay made a clever run through the middle before, not for the first time, he was chopped to the ground, this time a free-kick was forthcoming.
Hewitt hit the ball well from 30 yards, but it was straight at the keeper. With 34 minutes gone Dulay was again fouled which was ignored by the referee but when Dudley broke into the Lockmen half he blew for a nothing challenge on a Robins’ forward. To compound the anger, the ball was pumped into the box where Andy Arnold escaped his marker and headed home. The Lockmen won a corner shortly after, but Matt Dove fired wide.
The first action after the break saw Willenhall win a 50th minute corner. Laidley produced a fine header, but this was blocked and cleared. They then won successive corners on 56 minutes, again nothing was doing. Finally the game snapped out of its slumber when The Lockmen fashioned a quality equaliser. There seemed few options for Simon Larmor wide on the right, but he wriggled free, and crossed first time into the six yard area where substitute Scott Harris was waiting to sweep the ball home.
However The Lockmen were level only four minutes when a routine ball into the box saw Matt Dove slice a clearance which appeared to be heading straight to Holliday, the ball was diverted instead to Aaron Lloyd and he pounced to score.
The Lockmen saw another corner on 76 minutes come to nothing before their next attempt a minute later was ended when Watts plucked a cross out of the night air. Ashton then did well to punch a Robins corner clear on 81 minutes before Dudley sub Shaun Devonport rattled a post after good work. The Lockmen then cleared off their own line before Bradleigh Gregory saw his shot suffer the same way at the other end with two minutes left. Lloyd managed to fire wide in injury-time in the last action of the game a minute into stoppage-time. The defeat sees The Lockmen probably needing one more victory to be sure of safety.