RADCLIFFE moved two points clear at top of Evo-Stik West with a 2-0 win against Kendal Town at the Neuven Stadium on Tuesday night.

The home side started the brighter of the two in the first 10 minutes, with Scott Metcalfe a frequent feature down the left side, and his early attempt was fumbled behind from a tight angle.

Callum Grogan was next in the queue to record an effort on goal. His header was directed wide of Matthew Johnson’s left-hand post.

Division player-of-the-season contender Tunde Owolabi rounded the away side’s number one minutes later but couldn’t find the right finish as the Mintcakes’ defence backtracked to clear the danger.

Owolabi crashed an attempt against the post after neat control created the space for his shot as Boro pressed for the opening goal.

The Kendal barrier was finally crushed on 41 minutes, Metcalfe producing a moment of magic from a free kick 25 yards out, which was inch-perfect as it curled into the top corner.

Jon Macken’s side went out all guns blazing in the second half as Owolabi carved his way through Jordan Tucker but his final effort was blazed over.

Substitute Ben Wharton fired his first shot at goal on 59 minutes with an instinctive volley on the turn, which was a whisker wide.

Wharton then got a second bite of the cherry and doubled Boro’s lead. A beautifully whipped free-kick from Matty Crothers found the head of the lethal Wharton, who flicked it home past Johnson.

Kendal had to wait until the 83rd minute to create their best chance of the match, Lewis Wainwright trying a speculative effort from 20 yards out, leaving Ollie Martin rooted to the spot but happy to see the ball flash wide.

The victory came just three days after Boro had beaten previous leaders Atherton Collieries to close in on top spot.

Owolabi was the man coming off the bench to score the only goal of the game at the Skuna Stadium.

Colls had the best chance of the opening half, Ben Hardcastle fizzed a first time ball across the face of goal but no one was on hand to get the vital touch.

Macken’s side had enjoyed sporadic success down the left flank in the first half hour, with Aaron Burns getting found free numerous times, but unable to dig out the required cross for the oncoming Wharton.

In one of the best chances of the day, Metcalfe found himself with only Greg Hartley to beat, but the shot was tame and straight at the keeper.

With the teams locked at 0-0 Macken sent on leading scorer Owolabi and Elliot Rokka on 55 minutes in, to add more pace to the Boro attack.

The impact was almost instant as Metcalfe’s header inside the box fell to Owolabi, but he could not keep his cross down after neat footwork.

Then the crucial moment came with 20 minutes to go. Owolabi shimmied his way past two defenders before squeezing the ball past Hartley.

Five minutes on, Colls were given a golden chance to snatch a draw when Hardcastle’s powerful attempt on goal hit the hand of Lee Neville and the referee signalled for a penalty.

Hardcastle took the spot-kick but thrashed it wide and Boro held out for a crucial victory.