Scarborough Athletic shrugged off their recent dip in form when they ground out a 2-0 home win against Ossett Albion.
In front of another worryingly low crowd, Boro exhibited their ability to grit their teeth and fight their way to the three points that moved them up to fifth in the Evo-Stik North standings.
The 282 fans in attendance weren’t treated to the best game of football, though they did see a Boro side that had far too much for their opponents.
Jimmy Beadle’s first-half penalty and a second half toe-poke from sub Ryan Blott underlined this gap in quality.
Blott was the only omission from Boro’s last starting 11, as James Bennett added more strength to a packed Boro midfield.
Striker Blott’s rest on the bench was only short-lived though as he was introduced after only a couple of minutes for the injured Matty Plummer.
By this time, Boro seemed in full flow, though they had almost let former Athletic striker David Brown sneak in before things were mopped up.
Blott was the first Boro player to squirm free in the Ossett box, but he tried to place the ball past keeper Neil Bennett when he possibly should have just smashed it. The effort clipping the stopper’s leg and being cleared.
Boro’s pressure didn’t relent, as Blott’s chance was followed by a Ben Middleton header from a corner, that sailed high and wide.
Having created these early opportunities, the killer pass started to desert Boro and all their hard work across the midfield seemed to be in vain.
It came down to the wizardry of James Bennett to almost unlock the Ossett defence. The midfielder jinked his way into the box and bent a shot at goal that brought the best out of keeper Neil Bennett.
There was nothing the Ossett number one could do a minute before the break when referee Keith Lawson adjudged that Henry Owen had handled in his own box.
Beadle stepped forward confidently and demonstrated another penalty-taking masterclass by sweeping the ball into the corner.
Having finished the half with a bang, Boro started the new period in similar fashion.
The ball found Chris Bolder in the box and his shot was saved, Blott wasn’t to be denied though as he poked home from close range to double the advantage.
Boro could have easily added to their total as the minutes ticked on, but Ossett led something of a charmed life.
Gary Bradshaw rose well, but his header flew just over, then Ryan Williams’ clever lofted effort was met by the hand of Neil Bennett.
Ossett had showed little threat, but they almost clipped back Boro’s lead with just a few minutes remaining.
Brown’s header was well saved by Jason White, only for the ball to fall to sub Connor Brunt, but he could only drag his shot horribly wide with the Boro keeper grounded.
Seconds later Boro brought veteran Bryan Hughes on for a cameo few minutes that turned into a real highlight for the fans.
As well as teasing the ball around with some intricate passing skills, Hughes almost made it three when his delicate lob beat the keeper but smacked against the Ossett bar.
That was the final act of the fixture that produced a welcome win that will hopefully haul Boro back on track in this season’s quest for glory.