TONER PUTS THE SAINTS ON TOP
A SECOND half strike from substitute John Toner took Total Network Solutions to the top of the League of Wales with a hard-fought 2-1 win at Caersws
Toner settled a scrappy, often niggly encounter just moments after appearing in the 70th minute when he found space to steer his low, angled 20-yard shot inside the right post.
But there was little to savour for much of the night as both sides struggled to get to grips with a sticky surface and a sequence of baffling decisions from the match officials.
And, with tempers often threatening to boil over, the encounter ended with Caersws defender Hugh Clarke and TNS's Chris Taylor both red-carded following the linesman's intervention for an incident in the visitors' box.
Chances had been in short supply for much of the chilly night as slippery conditions underfoot made life difficult.
But the Bluebirds had started brightly and went close in the fourth minute as Graham Evans slid the ball against the post from close range after beating keeper Gerard Doherty to a stray backpass.
Evans was also denied by the keeper's legs on the left from Clarke's long pass before the hosts took a 28th minute lead as Sean Jehu's 30-yard free kick floated into the roof of the net over Doherty, who had been caught off his line.
But the Saints hit back in controversial manner on 35 minutes, following one of several debatable offside calls during the night.
With the home defence appealing in vain, keeper Matthew Griffiths advanced to the edge of the box but his attempted clearance was blocked and as the ball ran loose his desperate lunge brought down John Leah.
Griffiths picked up a yellow card before Chris Edge stepped up to plant his penalty into the right comer to level matters.
With both sides committed and refusing to budge, the second half became an energy sapping stalemate of few chances.
Caersws had their possession but carved little in front of goal as TNS held firm to keep up the title pressure courtesy of Toner's 10th league goal of the season.