Brackley Town’s battle to stay up received another setback in Saturday’s Vanarama National League North defeat to Stockport County.
The Hatters weathered a second half onslaught to earn only a second win in 16 games as Saints fell to a third straight defeat, slipping into the bottom three following a solitary goal from Obi Anoruo.
The only goal of the game came just before the break at St James Park where Saints deserved at least a point.
County almost made the perfect start as Richard Brodie was thwarted only by Sam Hornby’s alert anticipation in cutting off a back pass before Courtney Cameron’s cross evaded David Moyo and Matty Lowe’s header was off target.
The winner came in the 39th minute and was hotly disputed by Saints as right back Junior English appeared to be fouled in the build-up before Anoruo applied the final touch to Karl Ledshaw’s cross as defenders appealed to the referee in vain.
After a tight first half, the home side dominated the second period as the Hatters struggled to break out of their own half under spells of sustained pressure. Joe Clarke hit the bar, Steve Diggin’s fierce effort struck the post after fine work by Lowe and keeper Ian Ormson kept out Moyo’s shot low to his left as Saints did everything but score.
County’s Lewis Montrose was sent off late in the game for a second yellow card and the visitors had to survive five added minutes in which time a rare mistake saw Ormson fail to collect a cross but Moyo could not capitalise as Stockport somehow held out for a clean sheet.