AFC Fylde made it nine wins from their last ten National League North games on Tuesday night with a 1-0 victory over Buxton FC at Mill Farm.
In a game that saw both goalkeepers cancel each side out, it was down to Pierce Bird to step up for the Coasters when he met Nick Haughton’s corner in the 62nd minute to, in the end, help his side claim three points.
Adam Murray made three changes to the side that won 2-1 away at Southport, with Luke Burke, Curtis Weston and Kyle Morrison replacing Connor Barrett, Emeka Obi and Will Hatfield.
On a cold winter night as both sides were looking to fire themselves up early on, Fylde had an early sighter at goal after Haughton found Danny Philliskirk at the back post before Philliskirk recycled it back out to Haughton for an effort from range, though he struck over.
Haughton tried his luck once again, but this time with a stronger effort at Theo Richardson’s near post, but the Buxton shot-stopper dealt with it well to palm away.
Buxton arrived at Mill Farm in the search of turning their form around, and former Coaster Sam Osborne was on the charge after picking up a loose ball to drive at goal and eventually drag a shot wide.
Following the game hitting a surprisingly quiet spot, there was time just before the break for the Coasters to try and take a lead into the second half when Luke Conlan whipped a curling corner to Alex Whitmore at the back post, who rose highest and forced Richardson into a smart stop at his near post.
Half-Time: AFC Fylde 0-0 Buxton FC
As half-time team talks would go, Adam Murray will have sent his side out asking for more, and he had that within the first five minutes after Haughton’s corner was met by the rising Whitmore, whose bullet header was kept out by an outstretched Richardson arm and hooked away.
Fylde were on the front foot, and after the lines were broken, Haughton was allowed to turn on a sixpence and aim for the top right corner, firing inches over in the process.
However, the pressure from Murray’s men told when Haughton put a corner to the near post for Bird to attack and head into the far corner of the net for the lead.
Osborne, on his return to Mill Farm, was hoping to put himself on the scoresheet from inside the area, but after he shot wide, the Coasters went up the other end and almost had a second of the night.
Nick Haughton was involved in almost all the attacking play, and this time, he decided to slide Joe Rowley in down the left, who cut inside and let fly towards the bottom right corner, though Richardson made another strong stop to deny the substitute.
As the game entered the final stages, the visitors did cause a little bit of panic for the Coasters when a bit of head tennis inside the 18-yard box allowed Shaun Brisley an opportunity in front of goal, but as Neal charged the ball down, he headed over.
There was still time for a couple of chances for the Coasters to finish the game off as Rowley unselfishly squared to Charman inside the six-yard box, only for him to blast over before Haughton skipped past several men to eventually be denied by Richardson once again.
Full-Time: AFC Fylde 1-0 Buxton FC
AFC Fylde: Neal, Morrison (58’ Rowley), Whitmore, Bird, Burke (63’ Barrett), Conlan, Philliskirk, Weston (58’ Hatfield), Haughton, Charman, Faal.
Unused Subs: Obi, Patten.
Buxton FC: Richardson, Moult, Granite, Meikle (87’ Ackroyd), Elliott, Poole, Brisley, Osborne (73’ Simms), Jackson, Bunn (73’ Kirby), Boden.
Unused Subs: Dawson, Windass.