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Stockport County 1
Saturday 28th January 2006
Football League 'League Two'
Celebrations after Ian Stonebridge had levelled the scores in the 89th minuteAn 89th minute goal from substitute Ian Stonebridge salvaged a draw for Wycombe against Stockport County at Adams Park and retain top spot in 'League Two'. Team news for Wycombe had seen Dean Bowditch named as substitute after he had completed a loan move from Ipswich Town on Thursday afternoon. Elsewhere Mike Williamson was missing with an ankle injury picked up at Barnet the previous weekend but Matt Bloomfield returned to midfield having recovered from his hamstring problem.
The match was proceeded by another emotional minute's silence for Mark Philo. All club staff congregated along the touchline to join in the tribute and Mark's father and brother were in the crowd.
Dean Bowditch is introduced for his Wycombe debutThe main action saw County 'keeper James Spencer make two outstanding saves early on. The first came on 8 minutes when Clint Easton's cross from the left bye-line saw Kevin Betsy direct a downward header at the near post that looked a certain goal until Spencer clawed the ball away. Eight minutes later Spencer tipped Tommy Mooney's lob from 18 yards over the Valley End cross bar.
Wycombe's frustration at not taking the lead was compounded when the visitors opened the scoring on 37 minutes - Matthew Hamshaw sending in a wonder strike from the left of midfield that flew into the opposite corner of the net past Matt Duke.
The goal knocked Wycombe off their stride for the remainder of the half and following the break County substitute Michael Wolkski nearly made it 2-0 on 50 minutes with a 30 yard effort that Duke did well to tip wide.
Bowditch was introduced just after the hour mark for his Wycombe debut but the frustration countinued for Wycombe on 76 minutes when after Mooney had converted Betsy's cross from the right the play was pulled back because the ball had been unjudged to have gone out of play.
Two minutes later at the other end Hamshaw went close when his free-kick from the right of goal struck the foot of the near post. It seemed like it wasn't going to be Wycombe's day when Mooney fired inches wide of the left hand post with six minutes remaining. But with the clock edging towards 90 minutes a high ball into the box was only partially cleared by the County defence and it was Stonebridge who managed to get the vital touch on Matt Bloomfield's flick on to level the scores and earn Wanderers a point.
Final Score - Wycombe 1 Stockport County 1
Speaking to BBC Three Counties Radio after the game John Gorman said "We played good football today and on a pitch that was bobbly. It was better than it has been but it wasn't easy to play on" The Wycombe boss said that the recent events had affected his players, "It's been a very emotional two weeks now. That's what's cost us four points. But that's life, that's what happens. We've lost a boy's life which is more important but it has affected our play because we are playing with emotion at the minute and sometimes a wee bit more calmness would have got us the points that we probably deserve. It could easily have been two games lost because football kicks you in the teeth but the effort that we showed didn't deserve that and I'm so proud of them again that we kept going and kept going right until the end."
Wycombe: Duke, Senda (sub 80 Martin), Easton, Collins, Johnson, Burnell, Bloomfield, Oakes (sub 73 Stonebridge), Betsy, Mooney, Torres (sub 61 Bowditch) - subs not used: Williams, Lee
Bookings: none
Scorers: Stonebridge (89)
Stockport County: Spencer, Clare, Raynes, Briggs, Robinson, Allen, Williams, Hamshaw (sub 89 Le Fondre), Boshell, Bramble (sub 87 Dickinson), Griffin (sub 24 Wolski) - subs not used: Singh, Howarth
Bookings: Bramble (foul 80)
Scorers: Hamshaw (37)
Referee: Mr P Miller Attendance: 5,512 (220 away end)
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