Newport County 1 King's Lynn 3
28th April 2001
LINNETS manager Tony Spearing watched his side climb to the dizzy heights of third, but preferred to talk about the performance of young debutant keeper Simon Nobes.
The 18-year-old made the dramatic elevation from the youth team to the senior side, in place of the sick Chuck Martini, and handled himself admirably as Lynn turned on the style in Wales.
A delighted Spearing said: "Simon can be very proud of himself, the occasion didn't faze him at all.
"Before the game I told him to go out and enjoy himself and he did everything that I expected of him.
"Our three centre-backs protected him very well, but when called upon he didn't let us down."
Depending on midweek results and their final game at home to Fisher on Saturday, Lynn now have the chance of their highest placing in the Premier Division since 1984/85, when they were pipped to the title by Cheltenham.
"Its an fantastic achievement," commented Spearing.
"Nobody gave us a prayer when I took charge, but here we are sitting in the top three and proving everyone wrong.
"The spirit we have here is absolutely unbelievable, and that alone could win us the league next season.
"When you can go to places like Newport and Salisbury and get results like we have, then it shows how far we've come."
Lynn stuck with the same formation that served them so well in the midweek drubbing of Salisbury.
That enabled Adie Hayes to continue in his new left wingback role and once again he excelled as Lynn, assisted by the wind, dominated the first period.
The only disappointment for Lynn came when the injury-jinxed Dave Puttnam limped out of the proceedings after only 17 minutes.
He was replaced by Jon Palmer, who set up Lynn's first chance on goal, when he flicked-on a Simon Dakin throw into the path of Kristian Jones, who fired over from the tightest of angles.
Ten minutes before the break, Nobes belied his tender years with a fine piece of handling at the feet of home forwards Carl Dale and Gary Shephard, following a dangerous cross from Rhys Edwards.
Lynn took the lead in the 43rd minute when a Palmer corner from the right eluded a clutch of bodies in the box and fell to Hayes, who drilled the ball home.
Two minutes after the restart Palmer saw his penalty saved by home keeper Pat Mountain, after Andrew Thomas had been penalised for handling in the area.
That miss looked as though it would be crucial when the Exiles broke up field to equalise through their leading scorer Shephard.
Dave Robinson then cleared a Dale effort off the line as Newport threatened to punish Lynn further.
In the 66th minute, a quick breakaway from Lynn saw Jones leave a home defender in his wake, before Thomas felled him in the box.
Hayes was entrusted with the resulting spot kick, which he duly slotted home to put King's Lynn 2-1 ahead.
Four minutes later, Lynn's pace took them clear on the left and Mountain failed to hold on to Jones' shot, before Lyndon Rowland was on hand to tap in the follow-up.
: Nobes, Dakin, Clark, Robinson, Fuff, Raynor (March 63), Anderson, Hayes, Jones (Rowe 71) , Rowland, Puttnam (Palmer 17).
: P. Mountain, D. Robison, S. Benton, R. Dorrian, A. Thomas, G. Thorne, R. Edwards (M. Rose 68), J. Donovan, C. Dale, G Shepherd, S. James. Not used: R. Plant, G. Kemp.
Lynn - Clark. Newport - Robison, Thomas, Thorne.
: 627. Lynn News MoM
: Adie Hayes