Kidderminster Harriers 1 Guiseley 2

AFTER securing their Vanarama National North status for next term with a win over Darlington in their final home game of the season, Guiseley ended with back-to-back victories following victory at Kidderminster Harriers on the last day of the campaign.

Joint-manager Marcus Bignot said: “We’re delighted as management and staff and we’re really happy for the football club and its supporters with the situation both on and off the pitch.

“It’s not just about coming through this season with the National North status preserved, its going into the summer with no liability going into next season.

"Its been an up and down season but the biggest part for me has been this relegation battle because its OK when things are going well, you generally don’t learn a lot but what we have learned in this second half of the season is a lot about the character of the people here.

“This group of players has been a delight to work with.

"Its OK when you’re on Match Of The Day beating against Cambridge and live against Fleetwood (in the FA Cup run), everyone wants to know you and be a part of it, but ends to the season like we’ve just had is when you can really judge the strength of a football club.

“This league is getting harder and harder and we’re a small club in terms of fan base and infrastructure. But we’ve come here against a full-time club with an infrastructure that’s frightening and this is what we’re competing with.

“We have always overachieved and we’re looking forward to overachieving again.”

It was a tough game to end with away at a Kidderminster Harriers side who had underachieved to be in 10th place, but then it had been a tough season for the Lions, so for them to finish with two uplifting victories was unexpected but more than welcome.

The game, like so many over the weekend, was adversely affected by the fierce winds but the players from both sides coped well with the conditions.

The visitors had the first chance through Jack Dyche but Lions keeper Marcus Dewhurst was soon in action, foiling Milan Butterfield and Ed Williams twice, his second save from Williams being an excellent one.

However, it was the visitors who took a lead into the break as Harriers conceded a 44th-minute penalty. The home side’s Jaidan White, making his first start, fouled George Cantrill and Andy Halls slotted past Tom Palmer from 12 yards.

Guiseley doubled their lead midway through the second half when an effort from Dyche moved mid-flight and fooled Palmer. Dyche almost hit a rapid brace but his next shot came back off the inside of the post and Will Hatfield’s shot from the rebound was blocked.

Dewhurst made another outstanding save to thwart Williams, diving to palm a shot around his post, but he could do nothing as the home side halved the deficit soon after from the penalty spot, Joe Ironside netting his 19th goal of the season.

Guiseley substitute Lewis Archer had a very good chance late on, but Palmer made an excellent save.