HARRIERS ended Buxton’s 14-match unbeaten run with a 1-0 win at Aggborough to make it successive league wins for the first time since January.

Ashley Hemmings got the only goal of the game inside the opening minute to take his own personal tally for the season to nine.

On a warm afternoon and in front of another healthy 2,000-plus crowd, Russ Penn’s men kept alive their very slim hopes of sneaking into the National League North play-off places.

Alfreton Town’s win over Peterborough Sports means the gap to those play-off places is effectively seven points when factoring goal difference.

With just four games left to play, that’s likely to be a bridge too far for the outfit, but Jimmy O’Connor wasn’t quite ready to admit defeat when he spoke after the game.

“We want to keep our season going,” he said. “Wherever that leads, we don’t know, but all we can do is keep winning games.

“Our expectation comes from us, nothing to do with Fylde or King’s Lynn – it is all about ourselves.

“We know where we are and we know where we’ve come short this year, but the group we’ve got now… it’s about the next game.

“It’s about pride, putting on performances and people showing who wants to be here next year.”

Harriers did arguably put in one of their most accomplished home showings of the season against Craig Elliott’s Bucks and it was enough to net them just a fifth victory on their own soil this term.

Shane Byrne had played the ball to Hemmings, 20 yards out, who took it in his stride before planting it firmly past the dive of Theo Richardson between the sticks.

Krystian Pearce went close later in the half with a header over the bar, while fellow defender Caleb Richards went within inches of a goal with a low shot before the break.

Buxton, who had swept so many teams before them prior to their visit to Worcestershire, only really had Diego De Girolamo’s second half header as their attacking output for the day, and that was an effort Christian Dibble was able to watch over his bar.

With a little over a quarter of an hour left, the influential Joe Leesley rattled the woodwork as Harriers pushed for a second to kill the game off – his drive from distance beating Richardson but not the frame of his goal.

The Harriers fans revelled in a rare home win as Harriers kept in touch with the play-offs, even if they do most likely remain a little too much at arm’s length.

Up next for the Reds is a trip to league leaders AFC Fylde on Easter Monday.