Southern League Division East: Barton Rovers 1 Northwood 1
Barton Rovers’ search for a first home league win of the season goes on after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Northwood on Saturday.
The hosts made changes to their side for the clash as there were debuts for Matt Finlay in goal, Kyle Lincoln at left back and striker Ewan Fieldhouse.
Northwood began this game very much on the front foot with midfielder Michael Buckley firing wide after five minutes.
This was followed on 10 minutes with a fine right wing cross that Finlay touched over for a corner.
It took until the 20th minute for Rovers to make inroads into the Northwood defence but Danny Watson’s surging run ended with a scuffed shot that was comfortable for visiting keeper Brendan Hazlett.
Northwood came close again on the half hour, as Finlay was called upon to push over a point blank header from Jermaine Osei.
Barton were next to threaten but Jamie Nicholls’s header was easy pickings for goalkeeper Hazlett.
After a quiet start, Fieldhouse had a couple of shots in quick succession but neither found the target.
Northwood then had a glorious chance on the stroke of half time, but Osei fired wide when it looked easier to hit the target.
The second period had only just begun when some calamitous defending saw Rovers’ Dan Newton upended Osei in the penalty area, with the referee pointing to the spot.
Osier stepped up for Northwood and sent Finlay the wrong way to open the scoring.
The away side grew in confidence after the goal and went on to dominate proceedings until Barton manager Tony Fontanelle decided to make changes.
He sent Charlie Payne, Jack Hockney and Ivan Machado on and the substitutions worked well, as his side had the better of the closing stages.
They got their rewards too as with just six minutes to go, the officials spotted a handball in the area and awarded Rovers a penalty.
Up stepped Danny Watson to confidently slam the ball and make it 1-1.
Rovers pressed for a winner but were indebted to keeper Finlay who made some fine stops at the death to ensure his side picked up a point.
The result sees Barton fourth bottom of the table and with a home record that now reads three draws and five defeats from their eight games.
Rovers host Thame United this evening and then travel to Fleet Town on Saturday.