League leaders take all the points
Rovers made the trip to face the table-topping "Steelmen" of Corby Town knowing every effort would be needed to extract anything from this match. The game kicked off with a blustery wind in evidence and in front of a bumper crowd of 471 - the Rovers fans being well outnumbered and outvoiced by the home support. Corby's Elliot Sandy was first to threaten after 7 minutes and slotted home only for the 'goal' to be ruled out for offside. Three minutes later Corby went close again when Jordon Crawford's attempt hit the bar and went over. Corby had the edge early on but the swirling wind was making both ball control and accurate passing difficult for both sides. For Rovers, both Sam Gibson and Adam Watkins were working their socks off in midfield for Rovers and slowly got their side a platform in this match. Rovers left-back LukeWarner-Eley had an effort saved after 13 minutes and was in the action again when Corby's Jordan Francis picked up a yellow card for a shirt pull on him and this was quickly followed by a further booking for Corby's Sam Grouse just four minutes later - perhaps an indication of Corby's failure to pierce the Rovers rearguard to this point and the home crowd's frustration was evident. Rovers Jimmy Hartley should have opened the scoring after 31 minutes when he toe-poked against a post with just the keeper to beat and just minutes later fired wildly over the bar when in good position to score. Gary Malone in the Rovers goal was fielding everything Corby were able to muster and Rovers went in at half-time level and having more than matched Corby throughout the first half.
Rovers started the second half brightly and instantly Connor Vincent brought the save of the season from Corby keeper Dan George when he stretched high to his left to finger tip Vincent's shot over the bar for a Rovers corner which came to nothing. Immediately, on 47 minutes, Adam Watkins was then cautioned for 'simulation' which rather should have been a clear Rovers free-kick to this watching reporter. A scare for Rovers after 52 minutes when Corby's Elliot Sandy 'scored' but, once more, after the referee decreed a high challenge and it was chalked off.
Those missed Rovers opportunities however came back to haunt them when Corby applied the screw and after 68 minutes and following an almighty goalmouth scramble, the cool head of Corby's man of the match Joel Carta crashed home the rebound from Sandy's shot to put the home side in front. It was all Corby at this point and they doubled their lead after 75 minutes when Carta fired in a rocket from the edge of the box. The icing on the cake for Corby came in the last minute when substitute Jake Bettles was allowed space and time to fire home a spectacular third and effectively close out this match. Entertaining stuff and make no mistake that Rovers played a part and, but for some good goalkeeping and wasteful finishing, might well have take something from this game.
Final Score: Corby Town FC 3 ( Carta 68 & 75, Bettles 90) Barton Rovers FC 0