DERBY clashes are made up of a blockbusting variety of ingredients that lift these games above the norm.
Saturday’s battle at Queensgate certainly didn’t disappoint on any front.
It was by no means pretty, but there was passion, controversy and a sprinkling of quality, which was enough to guide Scarborough Athletic to all the points.
Things could have been so different though, had Pickering not fluffed their lines in front of goal during the opening period.
A number of fans were busy selecting their berth in a chilly Queensgate when Boro grabbed the lead with just four minutes played.
Joe Naylor unpicked an experienced Pickering rearguard with a through ball and Ryan Blott’s angled drive bounced in off the post.
Smiles were swiftly wiped off the faces of the home fans a couple of minutes later, when the Pikes bit back.
Tom Reid’s free-kick was nodded across the goal and former Boro man Dave Hartas poked in at the far post.
Then followed the key moments in the clash, as Pickering threw away two glorious opportunities to grab the match by the scruff of the neck.
Gangly attacker Steve Baxter was sent clean through on keeper Kevin Martin, but his coordination failed him and the Boro stopper collected.
Then, with 20 minutes on the clock, Joel Ramm burst into the area and took a tumble under the challenge of Jimmy Ghaichem.
Tom Adams looked to have picked out the bottom corner of the net from the penalty spot, but Martin’s outstretched hand brilliantly denied him.
Moments like this can change the outcome of a game, that was the case, as Boro were buoyed and the Pikes were sunk.
The hosts’ new strikeforce of Blott and Adam Lee soon began to warm up the proceedings, with the former drilling against the foot of the post.
It was Lee who moved Boro back ahead though, when Naylor nodded down a free-kick and the striker smashed home.
In to and fro style, this stung Pickering back into action, with Johnny Brown’s drive fizzing over the bar and Simon Sturdy’s header being scooped off the line.
Blott stung the palms of Pickering keeper Adam Mitchell at the beginning of the second half, before the visitors tried to force the issue with a string of attacks.
Ramm saw his free-kick saved and Baxter rose well in the area, but his header sailed inches wide.
In a rare foray forward, Blott wriggled free, but looked to be tripped by a combination of Michael McNaughton and Reid on the angle of the penalty area.
The striker dusted himself down and comfortably picked out the top corner to make it 3-1.
Pickering boss Jimmy Reid’s final roll of the dice saw him force his side forward, but all they could produce was a tame Darren Clough drive, which was easily held by Martin.