ASHBOURNE Aztecs under-14s were the ‘nearly men’ once again as they could not quite hold on against Spondon Dynamos.
Charles Owens was dangerous with his excellent hold up play and his intelligent runs, and he nearly opened the scoring with a smart shot which was pushed round the post.
The home side then went in front when a great inswinging free-kick from Scott was deflected, and Anthony was on hand to prod the ball over the line.
But Spondon battled back and had a number of shots blocked by centre-backs Dan Lee and Regan Major.
The visitors scored before the break when an clearance by Scott fell to a white shirt.
In the second half, Spondon gained the upper hand and had a period of sustained pressure, which ended with them forcing the ball into the net from the edge of the penalty area.
The Aztecs’ team spirit then came through as Bart Banks came on at left back and was immediately in the action as he set Griffiths away with two surging runs.
And it was Griffiths who set up the equaliser as Birks lost his marker and coolly side-footed the ball home.
Dutton then set Griffiths free and Owens was unlucky not to get his shot away.
Billy Owens was forced into two saves and the rest of his defence held strong after a series of corners and free kicks into the box, despite one hitting the bar.
Disappointingly, the winning goal came when Aztecs had possession, but as three defenders tried to play the ball out of defence in a neat triangle, they were dispossessed by Dynamos, who lobbed the ball over Owens with just five minutes to go.
AZTECS: Owens, Keeling, Scott, Banks, Lee, Major, Anthony, Dutton, Birks, Owens, Challinor, Griffiths.