Rushall Olympic's eventful FA Cup run came to an end when they were beaten by Skrill Premier high-flyers Grimsby Town, writes Terry Brumpton.
The Pics, although beaten, were never disgraced, and for three-quarters of the game were well in it.
Rushall began confidently and had the first threat when Kristian Ramsey-Dickson used his pace to good effect, beating his full-back, but his cross took a deflection straight into home keeper James McKeown’s hands.
Town captain Craig Disley hit back for the Mariners, but his shot was wide of the target. Liam Spink set up the next Pics attack with a good pass to Ramsey-Dickson out on the wing but this time his cross was too near to McKeown.
Grimsby’s impressive Scott Neilson combined with Disley to send Sam Hatton away but his cross was poor and a good opportunity was wasted.
Rushall were now gaining in confidence and the strike pair of Dele Adebola and Ahmed Obeng combined well to gain a free-kick on the edge of the area, but Jimmy Turner’s shot was too high.
Moments later the Pics were awarded another free- kick that Spink got on target but straight at McKeown.
The first real moment of danger for the Pics came in the 24th minute when the ball fell to Hannah, 12 yards out, but his fierce left-foot shot was blocked.
Eight minutes later the home side were ahead. Neilson cut into the penalty area and was brought down by Spink. The referee had no hesitation in awarding the home side a penalty and Hannah confidently blasted a left-foot shot past Chris Gemmell.
Six minutes into the second half, Gemmell made a good save from Neilson but then in a Rushall counter attack Ramsey Dickson dragged his shot wide of the far post.
Rushall had penalty appeals turned down when Ramsey-Dickson went down in the box and moments later the Pics wide man hit a shot just inches over the bar.
With 15 minutes remaining, the home side doubled their lead when the unmarked Shaun Pearson headed home a free-kick from Scott Kerr.
Pics’ Carl Palmer hit a volley well over the bar, but 10 minutes from time it was game over when Grimsby added a third, and again it was another simple goal. A long ball from Hatton found striker Andy Cook and he finished confidently.
Rushall manager Neil Kitching said afterwards: “For 75 minutes we were well in the game and I think that Grimsby knew they were in a game.
“At just 1-0 down at half time, we were right in the game but we missed a couple of good opportunities before Grimsby wrapped it up with two late goals.
“I am proud of the lads and we have certainly given it a right go.”
Grimsby: McKeown, Hatton, Thomas, Kerr (Jones 79), Pearson, Disley, Cook, Neilson, McDonald, Hannah (Hearn 66), Rodman (Colbeck 73). Subs not used: Hedge, Bignot, Thaney, McLaughlin.
Rushall Olympic: Gemmell, Turner, Wood, Tolley, Caines, Downes, Palmer, Spink (Bottomer 60), Adebola (Eckersley 83), Obeng (Mugisha 70), Ramsey-Dickson. Subs not used: Craddock, Daniel, Martin, Ellis