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Torquay reignite National League promotion hopes with slender King's Lynn win

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National League

Torquay United 1 King's Lynn Town 0

King's Lynn Town suffered their fourth defeat in five games as they went down to a narrow loss at third-placed Torquay United.

The Linnets again went toe-to-toe with one of the top sides in the league, but were undone by a goal a minute into the second half as the Gulls punished a goalkeeping error to get their promotion push back on track.

Lynn stuck with the same starting eleven that held second-placed Hartlepool United to a 2-2 draw on Tuesday night at Plainmoor with on-loan goalkeeper Theo Richardson remaining between the posts.

Goalkeeper Theo Richardson on his King's Lynn Town debut. Picture: Tim Smith. (45223860)
Goalkeeper Theo Richardson on his King's Lynn Town debut. Picture: Tim Smith. (45223860)

The Gulls selected fit-again Lucas Covolan ahead of Shaun MacDonald, who shipped four goals at Maidenhead United in midweek, while there was a first start for Argyle loanee Ryan Law at left back.

Lynn's Friday arrival Jordan Davies, who has joined The Linnets on loan from AFC Telford United for the remainder of the season, had to be content with a place on the bench, alongside Michael Gash, Simeon Jackson and assistant boss Paul Bastock.

Davies, 25, was prolific scorer for Prestatyn Town, where he scored more than 70 goals in three seasons in the Cymru Premier - the national football league of Wales.

The former Nantwich and Market Drayton Town frontman was added to Lynn's squad with striker Kairo Mitchell on World Cup qualifying duty with Grenada after this weekend.

Lynn, making their first-ever visit to Plainmoor, made a bright start and could have easily taken the lead as early as the third minute.

A delightful Tyler Denton free-kick came back off the Torquay bar and Covolan made a smart block from Jordan Richards' follow-up shot.

The hosts were awarded a free-kick of their own in the eighth minute but Sam Sherring headed wide after Liam Randell had won a a header at the far post.

Richardson got the faintest of fingertips to Armani Little's effort to turn the ball behind for a corner three minutes later before saving a Asa Hall's drive from the edge from the edge of the box.

Torquay's Jake Andrews then fired in a cross from the left and Richardson took no chances to push it behind for a corner, from which Hall headed just wide of the target.

The home side's Joe Lewis had his name taken for a foul on Mitchell but the resulting free-kick came to nothing.

Torquay's Scott Boden sprinted into the box, chasing a ball chipped over the top, but the busy Richardson was first to the bouncing ball.

Michael Gyasi's curling effort from the edge of the box was just wide for the visitors and the same player went close to breaking the deadlock again shortly after, but home goalkeeper Covolan saved well to spare his blushes after conceding possession.

In first half stoppage time, Scott Boden's spectacular overhead kick was well saved by Richardson as Torquay ended the first 45 minutes on top.

Lynn were caught cold at the start of the second period as The Gulls took the lead within a minute of the restart.

Richardson was finally beaten after failing to hold onto a Connor Lemonheigh-Evans shot from the edge of the box and Boden was on hand to tap home.

Gyasi's final contribution of the game saw him scuff an effort wide after outpacing Randell before being replaced by Michael Gash 13 minutes into the second half.

The third-placed Gulls, who came into match with just two wins from their last 10 league games, remained on top but Ian Culverhouse's side weren't going to go down without a fight.

Lynn introduced both Simeon Jackson and recent signing Davies into the fray for the final 18 minutes to give the visitors a real attacking look for the final quarter of the contest.

But it was the hosts who came closest to adding a second when Little's effort was parried away by Richardson 12 minutes from time.

On Tuesday night, the Linnets are back in National League action with a trip to Altrincham.

Torquay United: Covolan, Wynter, Lemonheigh-Evans, Hall, Little, Andrews, Randell, Sherring, Boden (Umerah 77), Law, Lewis. Subs: MacDonald, Buse, Koszela, Waters.

Booked: Randell, Lewis, Little.

Scorer: Boden 46.

King's Lynn Town: Richardson, Callan-McFadden, Smith, Clunan, Richards (Jackson 72), Gyasi (Gash 58), Fleming, Mitchell, Carey, Denton, Payne (Davies 72). Sub not used: Bastock.

Match stats (Torquay first)

Shots on target: 4, 2.

Shots off target: 7, 4.

Corners: 7, 3.

Yellow cards: 3, 1.

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