A MULTITUDE of missed Atherton Colls chances saw the home side left to rue what might have been as a late thunderbolt of a strike saw Shropshire visitors Market Drayton Town ran out 2-1 victors at the Skuna Stadium in the Evo-Stik League Division One West.

The defeat represents Colls’ first league loss since the end of August, leaving Colls in fourth position in the league table.

The first 25 minutes of action saw Colls dominate both in terms of possession and territory but visiting goalkeeper Ashley Rawlins thwarted them on many occasions in a frustrating first half.

Jordan Cover looked set to put Colls in front on the half hour mark, latching on to Josh Messer’s lovely threaded pass and rounding Rawlins, only to clatter the left hand goal post when trying to divert the ball around a trio of retreating Market Drayton defenders guarding the goal line. Cover flashed a 34th minute effort narrowly wide of the far post before Rawlins again did well to flick a Ben Hardcastle effort over the crossbar, with the Colls wide man flighting a free kick just past the post with the final act of a frustrating first half for Colls.

Rawlins was again the only obstacle preventing Colls from going in front, making a terrific double save on 55 minutes, quickly reaching low down to keep out Danny Lafferty’s header from a Vinny Bailey corner before palming away palming away Callum Spooner’s driven 30 yard strike.

The visitors took the lead on the hour when from a corner Simon Gregory scrambled the ball home.

It took only seven minutes for Colls to grab an equaliser, Rawlins getting a hand to the ball but ultimately finally beaten as Cover lashed the ball inside the far post.

Three minutes later and substitute Tom Bentham was agonisingly close to putting Colls in front, beating Rawlins but not visiting skipper Paul McMullen, who did superbly well to clear the ball just in front of the line.

Latham was called back in to action at the other end as Market Drayton looked to catch Colls on the break, doing well to use his feet to block the ball, while Bentham was again inches away from a second Colls goal, flashing the ball narrowly past the far post after being expertly played in by Messer.

Colls continued to pour forward in the search of a winner but were hit by an 85th minute sucker punch that ultimately decided the game, William Wells firing in a terrific strike from the left hand side outside the penalty area that gave Latham no chance as it flew in to the top right hand corner.

Danny Lafferty headed over the bar and Gareth Peet had a free kick saved by Rawlins as they searched for a late equaliser

On Saturday Colls travel up to the North East to take on Northern League Champions Marske United in the Buildbase FA Trophy. On Tuesday they visit Colne in the Evo-Stik Division 1 West.