AN under-strength Colwyn Bay fell to a 1-0 home defeat to newly promoted Evo-stik League West Division side Runcorn Linnets.

The Seagulls went into the clash with no recognised strikers due to the absences of Danny Bartle, James Barrigan and Callum Hassan, for what turned out to be manager Alan Morgan’s final game at the helm.

Caretaker boss Craig Hogg and assistant Neil Coverley will take charge for the first time this Saturday during their trip to Clitheroe (3pm).

Despite their depleted squad, the home side played some nice football at times in a goalless first half, but inevitably lacked a finishing edge.

Paddy Wharton kept them in the game with three or four excellent saves during the first hour, including a full-length dive to turn a Liam Collings shot round the post.

He also tipped a Louis Corrigan free kick over the bar and did well to block with an outstretched foot when visiting substitute Kristian Holt was left one on one inside the area.

The outstanding Wharton was finally beaten on 60 minutes when Shanley broke free to fire the only goal of the game and give Linnets their fourth win in five league outings to maintain their challenge at the top of the table.

Bay did come close with two or three efforts, with Josh Brizell’s strike hitting the foot of a post after some excellent approach play, with skipper Tom McCready forcing the away keeper into a smart save late on.

They had the perfect chance to secure something from the game when Danny Andrews was felled in the box after rounding the goalkeeper, but after consulting with his linesman the referee reversed his decision and condemned Bay to defeat.