Champions! Parkgate boss salutes heroic title winners

Parkgate FC celebrate their title win after the victory away to Wombwell Town. Pictures by Lee HopkinsonParkgate FC celebrate their title win after the victory away to Wombwell Town. Pictures by Lee Hopkinson
Parkgate FC celebrate their title win after the victory away to Wombwell Town. Pictures by Lee Hopkinson
MANAGER Scott Mason paid tribute to an “unbelievable” effort after Parkgate FC negotiated a crazy end-of-season run-in to clinch a league title.

The Steelmen beat Wombwell Town 2-0 last night to earn promotion to the Premier Division of the Northern Counties East League for the first time in six years.

It was Gate’s fifth win on the spin and came at the end of an energy-sapping run of eight matches in 16 days.

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A goal in each half from Jack Haslam and Ross Duggan saw off a determined challenge from Wombwell to set the celebrations in motion.

Joy at the final whistle for Parkgate. Pictures by Lee HopkinsonJoy at the final whistle for Parkgate. Pictures by Lee Hopkinson
Joy at the final whistle for Parkgate. Pictures by Lee Hopkinson

“We knew it was going to be hard and Wombwell certainly made it hard for us but we stopped them playing,” said Mason.

"Jack Haslam’s goal was a wonderful strike and it was Duggan’s 30th of the season. I asked him to go and get us a goal to win us this league and he did.

"People wrote us off because of the number of games we had to play but the players deserve to win the title, not just for the punishing run-in but for how they’ve been all season.

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"My phone hasn’t stopped ringing today. It’s been unbelievable.”

Parkgate and Wombwell Town fight it out.Parkgate and Wombwell Town fight it out.
Parkgate and Wombwell Town fight it out.

Mason said promotion had been a real club effort, from his assistant manager Keelan Hall and coach Jimmy Ghaichem through to the two men who helped create the club, long-serving chairman Albert Dudhill and secretary Bruce Bickerdike, plus Gino Maccio, who has done lots of work behind the scenes.

“So many people, too many to mention, have helped along the way, including the lads who only played a few games for us,” said the manager.

"We’ve come such a long way since I came to the club at the start of last season.

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"Albert could easily have got rid of me last year but he stuck with it. I knew we had something, a good core. Keelan and Jimmy came in last summer, we put some names together to sign and they’ve come in and smashed it.”

More action from Wombwell Town v ParkgateMore action from Wombwell Town v Parkgate
More action from Wombwell Town v Parkgate

Winning last night spared Parkgate the pressure of having to go to Shirebrook Town on Monday night needing a result, not to mention the play-offs.

Now they can approach that game and tomorrow’s League Cup quarter-final at home to AFC Silsden (3pm) differently.

"We’ll be able to attack the cup tie better than we would have done if we’d had to go to Shirebrook needing something,” added Scott.

"This is such a hard league to get out out of. I do believe any of the top seven would go and do well in the Premier Division and it is great we’ve finally got there.”

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