STEVEN Tames, a player Witton Albion have borrowed from another club, has probably not received the credit he deserves for his contribution on the pitch.
He scored twice on Saturday, increasing his goal tally for the campaign to 16 from 32 starts.
It’s the ratio strikers strive for.
But that doesn’t tell the whole story; the 25-year-old has started a significant proportion of those games – particularly since the arrival of Will Jones in February – from a wide position.
Tames showed against Stamford that he’s lost none of his attacking instinct, mind.
Restored to the point of Albion’s attack alongside Rob Hopley, he shone.
The Stalybridge Celtic front man was alert to hammer a loose ball past Sam Donkin after the Daniels’ custodian had parried his initial header, a goal that doubled Witton’s first-half advantage.
He then added gloss to a routine victory, their 29th of a remarkable campaign in the Northern Premier League’s Division One South, with another unfussy finish in the last minute after Bauress had sent him clear during a counter.
By then Stamford, spiky across the field but limited in attack, had long since been beaten.
They were competitive for the opening quarter of an hour, but lucky too when Hopley’s header from a Bauress free kick thudded against an upright.
The latter then stylishly swept his side into the lead after skipping around the visitors’ goalkeeper after a pass intended for somebody else deflected kindly into his path.
It was 2-0 when Tames swooped.
Stamford went closest when John King, with a clear sight of goal, was thwarted by Danny Roberts’ brilliant block.
Grant Ryan conjured an opening too, only to slice horribly off-target.
The contest was over within six minutes of the restart after the interval.
Hopley, allowed inexplicably to turn on the edge of the Daniels’ penalty area side-stepped two attempts to stop him before angling a left-foot shot into the far corner.
He then took a breather, as did Anthony Brown, when manager Carl Macauley sent on Jones and Michael Wilson for the remaining half-hour.
Full-back Liam Marshall was unlucky when his driven attempt flashed wide of the far post after he had burst into Albion’s box.
The visitors, who had lost on each of their previous four visits to Wincham Park, then could at least console themselves with the goal of the game.
There appeared little danger when King collected the ball, only for the winger to slalom his way past three defenders before staying calm while steering a shot past Roberts.
Witton’s custodian prevented them adding another when he clawed Marshall’s header to safety in stoppage time.
In between, Tames had tucked in Albion’s fourth – another discrete moment that reinforced his importance to this promotion-chasing side.
Witton | 4-4-2 | Roberts (GK), Gardner, Brown (Wilson 55), Lycett, Devine, Noon, Haywood, Owens, Bauress, Hopley (Jones 67), Tames Sub not used Williams Goals Bauress 16, Tames 31, 90 Hopley 51 Booked Bauress (fou)
Stamford | 4-4-2 | Donkin (GK), Hartley (Hollist 65), Gordon, Challinor, Marshall, Oldham, Juma, Laurie Wilson, King, Ryan, Smith Subs not used Duffy, McGeorge, Brown Goal King 80 Booked Ryan, Juma (both fouls)
Referee Ben Atkinson