SILSDEN came agonisingly close to claiming a significant Boxing Day scalp, only to concede at the death in a 1-1 draw at Northern Counties East League Premier Division leaders Campion.

Casey Stewart, with the help of a deflection, put the Cobbydalers in front early on, only for veteran midfielder Nicky Boshell to snatch an equaliser in second-half stoppage time for the hosts.

The dropped points mean Silsden slip to eighth, when a win would have put them fifth, and into the play-offs, on goal difference.

There was an early half-chance apiece for the two sides, but neither effort unduly troubled the keeper.

But Silsden took the lead on 18 minutes when Stewart drilled in a low free kick which took a nick off the Campion wall and nestled in the far corner.

The Red and Blacks almost equalised instantly, only for T’Nique Fishley to produce a brilliant goal-line clearance, hooking the ball away at the vital moment.

Silsden roared straight back, with Ellis Hudson firing a shot just over the bar, then Jake Maltby denied a clear run on goal by a handball from a despairing Campion defender, who was perhaps fortunate to only be booked.

But Campion are not leaders for no reason. They forced a succession of blocks from the Cobbydalers on the half-hour mark, before heading a good chance over the crossbar.

Jake Maltby had the final chance of the first half, but his fierce effort was gathered by the home stopper.

Maltby had an even better opportunity seconds after the interval, getting in behind only to shoot over the bar.

Campion then put a free-kick over the bar, before nearly grabbing a freak equaliser when a cross nearly floated all the way into the far corner.

The Red and Blacks hit Silsden on the break with 15 minutes to go, only for the final shot to go wide on the turn.

Fishley made a fine block to prevent a Campion goal, conceding a corner instead, before the hosts smashed a close-range volley over the bar after 88 minutes.

It was a full-on onslaught by this point, and though Silsden made some brave blocks inside the box before clearing one Campion attack, they failed to hold out.

Boshell equalised in the first minute of four added on, yet both sides still almost came up with an even more dramatic winner.

Stewart raced through for Silsden only to be denied by the keeper, while at the other end, Kyle Trenerry made a superb save after Campion got in behind the Cobbydalers’ backline.

He punched clear the follow up, and with that the points were shared.

Silsden return to action this Saturday, when they host 15th-placed Tadcaster Albion.