VAUXHALL Motors went down to a third consecutive defeat at Stafford Rangers on Saturday to almost certainly condemn them to relegation from the Blue Square North.
The afternoon got off to the worst possible start when both centre backs Rory Winters and Tom Hannigan were ruled out through injury and their absence was evident when in the first minute the defence was caught flat-footed which allowed Rangers’ Danny Glover to turn and shoot past the James Coates from close range.
Just minutes later the Motormen were level when captain Josh Wilson was felled in the area and Brian Moogan dispatched the resulting penalty.
However that was only a spur for the home side and it was no surprise when they went ahead again in the 17th minute when Craig McAughtrie beat the offside trap and crossed from the left for Grant Goodhead to head home from close range.
Motors responded with efforts from firstly Josh Macauley following a neat one-two with Chris Noone and then Tom Grice but neither hit the target and they paid the penalty once again eight minutes from the break when this time Levi Reid beat the offside trap to cross from the left for Dominic Merella to side foot the ball home on the half volley from ten yards.
Vauxhall started the second period a different side and took the game to their hosts with Josh Wilson going close twice - the second effort being well saved by home keeper Lee Evans.
The introduction of Lee Furlong and Karl Noon added pace to the attack and Vauxhall looked threatening with every foray.
The pair combined well only for Noon to have his shot blocked by Evans.
As the Motormen pushed forward they left themselves vulnerable to the counter attack and when Wellecomme was put through the game should have been settled but Coates made a good a stop and Wellecomme blasted the rebound high and wide of the goal.
Lee Dames cleared off the line in the final few minutes but not before Wilson and Furlong had good chances to score.
Vauxhall Motors: Coates, Owens, Dames, Lane, Moogan, Egerton, Noone (Furlong 60), Brown, J Macualey (Noon 60), Wilson, Grice (Smith 69). Subs not used Wright, Mustafa.