Grantham Town 3 - 0 Brighouse Town
Grantham Town goal scorers Nathan Tyson and Chris O'Grady mix it with the Brighouse Town defence. Photo: Toby Roberts
Grantham Town put in a generally dominant performance to keep a clean sheet and take all three points with three goals on Saturday afternoon.
The Gingerbreads improved as the game went on and the goals went in, whereas their higher placed visitors, although not throwing the towel in by any means, seemed to sense it was not going to be their day yet again – having lost 3-1 to Grantham at home in the reverse fixture earlier in the season.
With both sides sizing each other up early on, the game began at a moderate pace at an unseasonably mild Meres stadium.
The first chance went to the home side in the fourth minute. Damian McCrory's corner kick ended up at the feet of Chris O'Grady whose scuffed shot was dealt with easily.
Brighouse's set-pieces looked to be a real threat in the early exchanges. Declan Dunn conceded a free kick in the 10th minute. Jack Boyle curled in from 35 yards, a header failed to connect and the ball fell to Sam Reed who skied over the Grantham goal.
Two minutes later, another Brighouse free kick was powered goalward from the side-line, but Gingerbreads goalkeeper Dan Haystead caught confidently.
And then, out of nowhere, Grantham took the lead. Brighouse captain Corey Gregory was yellow carded for his foul on last man McGrady as he ran goalward. McCrory's 25-yard free kick was helped into the goal by the deftest of touches from Nathan Tyson, but enough to catch out keeper Brett Souter.
Five minutes later, at the other end, Haystead fumbled his initial save to Boyle's low drive but recovered the ball to deny the on-rushing Reon Benjamin-Potts.
Tyson had a chance to double his tally in the 23rd minute from an Ashton Hall free kick but the ball took a wicked deflection off a Brighouse defender.
Reed brought down Grantham's Dan Cocks four minutes later but Matt Tootle dragged his 20-yard free kick low and wide to the left.
The visitors then had another opportunity from a set-piece in the 32nd minute after Dunn brought down Mohammed Ibrahim. Benjamin-Potts got a touch to Boyle's 35-yard free kick but the ball went over its intended target.
Benjamin-Potts had a shot deflected over for a corner a minute later and Aiden Walker got his head to Boyle's flag kick, but again it went over the bar.
The Gingerbreads had further chances through Tyson who fired over, O'Grady's header was saved, and Tyson again whose cross-cum-shot forced a high save at the far post from Souter.
But Grantham did double their advantage four minutes into the second half when Tyson fired in from the edge of the penalty area.
And then a foul on Cocks in the area three minutes later gave the Gingerbreads a penalty. Tyson stepped up to complete his hat trick but his effort lacked real conviction and Souter saved low to his right.
Brighouse had a chance to pull a goal back in the 58th minute but Boyle's 20-yard free kick went just wide and over.
A contentious offside decision cost Tyson another chance of completing his hat trick on the hour mark.
The next real opportunity went the visitors' way in the 77th minute but the useful looking substitute Cole Roberts saw his on-target effort cleared from the six-yard box.
The still dangerous Boyle's 79th minute header was also cleared by the Grantham defence and three minutes later the home side finally made it 3-0.
This time, Tyson turned provider, running down the left and putting a ball through to O'Grady who made no mistake.
That was pretty much the real action all over, with Grantham bringing on a further two substitutes as the clock ran down to the final whistle and great celebrations amongst Gingerbreads fans.
Grantham Town: Haystead, Tootle, Stacey, McCrory, Wright (c), Hall, Waldram, Dunn, O'Grady, Cocks, Tyson. Subs not used: Jemson, Gadomski. Att: 272.