PRESTWICH'S promotion hopes were dealt another blow on Saturday after they peppered the Old Blackburnians goal but had to settle for a point following a 1-1 draw at home.

Mike Kosub's men twice hit the woodwork and had the ball ricocheting round the visitors' area like a pin-ball machine at times without getting the luck of the bounce that would have secured a deserved three points.

The result left them in fourth place in Division One of the Lancashire Amateur League, a point behind third-placed Old Blacks and two points off the top but having played more games than all their promotion rivals.

Mike Neary fashioned himself an early chance for Prestwich after beating several players on a terrific run to the edge of the area, but the winger was squeezed out before he could get a shot on goal.

Steve Murty also proved a constant threat on the opposite flank, assisted by intelligent overlapping runs from left-back Tom Gibson.

The defender came closest to giving Prestwich the lead with a cracking shot from the left edge of the area that cannoned back off the upright.

Sam Holden and Richard Steadman made their presence felt as the home side forced a succession of corners but the big centre-backs were never able to make a telling connection.

Prestwich were also sound defensively, with Chris Hopkins playing a great screening role in front of the back four, snapping into challenges in midfield.

At the other end, Murty had a close-range shot turned wide before Matt Struminski smashed a 20-yard drive against the post.

But the visitors took the lead from a set-piece on 25 minutes, their striker diverting a swerving cross past the dive of keeper Mike Hudson.

Prestwich were only behind for five minutes as Struminski produced a calm finish to convert a one-on-one and add his third goal in as many games.

After going into the break on level terms, Prestwich dominated the second half.

Connor Hart struck a powerful shot just over from long range, while Neary had a shot cleared off the line and Holden and Steadman went close with a number of headers from set pieces.

The best chance of the second period fell to Murty, who went clear in behind the Old Blacks defence but hit his shot against the keeper's legs.

The result extended Prestwich's unbeaten run to seven matches but must go down as an opportunity missed.