Chester couldn’t back up their midweek victory, this time on the wrong end of a 3-2 scoreline this afternoon at the Pure Stadium.
An Anthony Dudley penalty and a Paddy Lacey second half goal weren’t enough, as goals from Jack Bainbridge, Jordan Archer and Marcus Carver secured three points for Southport.
Bern and Jonno made two changes from Tuesday’s dramatic five-goal thriller, and they were both enforced. James Hardy and Declan Weeks missed out through injury, replaced in the team by Kevin Roberts and George Waring.
And the Blues’ defence was breached in the opening ten minutes with a former Chester man supplying the assist for the opener. Archer flicked on a long ball forward for Bainbridge to collect and slide it beyond Louis Gray.
The visiting Seals looked for an immediate response moments later, but Paddy Lacey headed George Glendon’s corner off target.
Down the other end Southport were eager to extend their lead and back up their midweek home win with another, but Archer was denied by Gray on the counter following good work by Josh Hmami.
Chester had their first attempt on target on 27 minutes as Jack Redshaw created space and shot from 20 yards, but Cam Mason was able to push it away.
Nevertheless, they did get level a few minutes later after Adam Anson handled inside his own box and the Referee pointed to the spot. Mason guessed the right way but Dudley’s penalty beat the keeper to level the scores.
But it was not equal for long and the hosts were back in front moments later. A cross from the left found the head of Archer who steered the ball beyond Gray.
The Sandgrounders would find time to further extend their advantage before the interval. After the Blues failed to clear Doug Tharme’s long throw, the ball was put back into the area for Carver to convert from close range.
Archer almost added a fourth before the break but struck the woodwork, and then Chester would come out and cut the deficit in half just three minutes after the break. Glendon’s fantastic ball into the box was bundled home by Lacey – his first of the season.
They continued to press, and moments later the wing backs combined as Josh Askew’s cross was nodded wide by Roberts.
Three changes were made in the space of five minutes, all the attacking options coming on, as the visitors looked to complete the fightback. However, chances were limited as the clock crept towards 90.
New loan signing Charlie Jolley was one of the substitutions, and he nearly set up Waring with a dangerous cross, but it was turned away by a defender. In the other box, shouts for a penalty were waved away when Hmami went down under a challenge from Simon Grand.
The Blues pressed late on but couldn’t find that leveller, Askew firing a shot over in stoppage time as the hosts held on for three points.
CHESTER: Gray, Roberts, Williams, Cowan, Grand, Askew, Lacey (Stephenson 68), Glendon, Dudley (Oyibo 64), Redshaw (Jolley 63), Waring.
SUBS NOT USED: Clark, Horsfield.
SCORERS: Bainbridge 9, Archer 37, Carver 40; Dudley (pen) 34, Lacey 48.