Notts County thunderbolt hands Magpies all three points against King's Lynn Town
King's Lynn Town 0 Notts County 1
Jake Reeves' spectacular second-half thunderbolt clinched promotion-chasing Notts County a slender victory at King's Lynn Town tonight.
Reeves crashed home a brilliant 30-yard winner nine minutes into the second half to condemn a battling Linnets outfit to their fourth successive defeat.
But it was tough on Ian Culverhouse’s side, who created and wasted a number of goalscoring opportunities against their high-flying visitors.
Linnets boss Culverhouse made four changes to the side beaten 2-0 by Bromley last Tuesday.
The quartet of Ross Barrows, Sonny Carey, Ryan Jarvis and Kairo Mitchell all came in with Michael Gash Alex Kiwomya dropping to the bench while there was no place in the squad for either Sam Kelly or Aaron Jones.
It was bad news concerning Jones before the kick-off with the defender rupturing an Achilles in training and facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines.
After a bright start from Lynn it was the Magpies, unbeaten in their last four outings, who wasted two chances in quick succession.
Ruben Rodrigues saw his shot blocked by the body of Chris Smith before the same player headed a Dion Evans-Kelly cross straight into the arms of Archie Mair when he should have done better.
The Magpies, playing their patient, passing football, were a constant threat to Lynn and after winning a free-kick just outside the home penalty box, Jordan Barnett saw his curling effort just go wide of Mair's left post.
The returning Carey was one of the bright spots for the hosts in the opening 30 minutes of the contest and the youngster forced Luke Pilling into a routine save 20 minutes before the break.
Midfielder Jordan Richards saw his name go in the book against his former club as the Magpies dominated proceedings in the middle of the park.
Connell Rawlinson saw his header scrambled off the line before Lynn wasted perhaps the best chance of the half in the 36th minute.
A clever pass from Cameron King picked out Mitchell but the striker pulled his effort wide of the target from just inside the box.
Six minutes later, Mitchell dispossessed Alex Lacey and found himself one-on-one with Pilling who turned his shot behind for a corner.
And from the resulting restart, it was Lacey who came to the rescue to clear Rory McAuley's header off the line.
The Linnets continued to defy the odds against their illustrious visitors who eventually got their noses in front nine minutes into the second period.
There looked little on when Jake Reeves picked the ball up some 30 yards out, but the County midfielder had other ideas has he unleashed an unstoppable shot past Mair for a contender for goal of the season.
Jimmy Knowles then saw his shot flash across the face of the home goal before Lynn introduced both Adam Marriott and Gash into the fray for the final 26 minutes.
Fourteen minutes from time it was Gash almost found an equaliser when the substitute saw his effort brilliantly kept out by the fingertips of Pilling, making his league debut for the Magpies.
It was Gash again creating more havoc in the visiting defence as he drove a shot across the face of the target in the 82nd minute.
Midfielder Jordan Richards saw a cross against his former club fumbled by Pilling in the dying minutes as the Linnets continued to go down fighting.
The Walks outfit remain entrenched in a relegation battle at the bottom of the National League, but can take a great deal of confidence from their performance against the Magpies who move up to third in the league standings.
King's Lynn Town: Mair, Barrows, Callan-McFadden, Smith, McAuley (Marriott 64), Denton, Richards, Jarvis (Kiwomya 71), King, Carey, Mitchell (Gash 64). Subs not used: Clunan, Southwell.
Notts County: Pilling, Reeves, Barnett, Doyle, Wootton, Boldewijn (Turner 84), Rawlinson, Kelly-Evans, Knowles (Miller 69), Rodrigues (Effiong 84), Lacey. Subs: O'Brien, Sam.