BARNOLDSWICK Town fell agonisingly short in a five-goal thriller against Hanley Town – following an incredible three red cards for the Silentnight Stadium outfit.

Strikes from Gareth Hill and Zack Dale put Town in a commanding position but conceding three goals in the last half hour was their undoing in the end.

Barlick centre-half George Skocki did well to block a goal bound effort from Daniel Needham in the opening couple of minutes, before Hanley's Keiran Brown missed a free header from the resulting corner.

After a dubious free-kick, Town almost conceded twice in quick succession; the ball nearly trickling in off a Barlick deflection, before a goal-line clearance again proved the saviour from the following corner.

Barlick took the lead in the 11th minute. Keeper Adam Lawrence planted a free-kick straight into the path of the welcoming Hill, who stroked the ball into the empty net from 30 yards.

Hill almost doubled his tally just a minute later. He spurred Alex Ralph's floated cross just wide of the far post.

Excellent hold up play by Hill found Ralph, whose strong left footed effort was well saved by Lawrence.

Barlick started the second half well. Dale found captain Andy Hill, brother of Gareth, 25 yards out, however his drilled effort was well-stopped by the visiting goalkeeper.

Barlick capitalised on their early pressure in the 53rd minute. Dale took the ball around Lawrence and slide home.

The visitors halved the deficit just five minutes later. Needham picked up the ball 30 yards from goal, before shifting the ball onto his left and arrowing a beautiful shot which nestled into the bottom left corner.

Town then suffered even more misfortunes in an incredible scenario. Winger Ralph was sent off after receiving two cards in as many minutes.

Following an off the ball tussle with a Town defender, Ralph went straight into the referee's book, and from the resulting free-kick, he upended another opponent to receive his marching orders.

Their misery was compounded a couple minutes later. After a soft foul was awarded 25 yards out, substitute Ryan Malbon bent his shot under the wall and into the bottom right corner.

Hanley completed their turnaround with just eight minutes left. A handball shout just outside their area was turned down before Thomas Ashton burst free down the left-hand side and squared the ball into the feet of another substitute Brian Barton to leave Barlick heartbroken.

Shehu voiced his frustrations and was sent to the stands by the referee as a result.

Barlick could have been awarded a late penalty. Gareth Hill was brought down, yet the referee wasn't having any of it. Jacob Holgate's resultant powerful effort was turned behind for a corner.

A well-struck strike was tipped round for a corner by Lawrence before salt was rubbed into the wound of the Sewer End faithful. From the corner, an outstretched Skocki caught the Hanley keeper with both feet, resulting in Barlick's third dismissal of the day.

Will Lancaster