Marcus Law was pleased to see his Kettering Town team “grind out a result” as they stayed on course for the Evo-Stik League South Premier Division Central title.
The Poppies took an early lead through top scorer Rhys Hoenes at Lowestoft Town and, in the end, that goal proved decisive as Kettering saw things out to record a 1-0 win.
Their task was made that bit harder after striker Aaron O’Connor was sent-off after just 24 minutes following an off-the-ball incident.
But Law was impressed with the way his players dealt with that setback as they went on to make it seven wins in a row.
“We started off really well and looked like we might have a bit too much for them,” the Poppies manager said.
“We got the goal but then the game has obviously been flipped on its head with the sending-off.
“I think the referee has reacted to what he has seen at the back end of the whole incident.
“He has seen the reaction from Aaron and reacted with the red card but hasn’t looked into why that reaction happened.
“That turned it into a situation where we had to manage the game and try to nullify their threat and I thought we did that quite well.
“I don’t think Paul White has had a serious save to make in the game and they have had a couple of free headers where they might have done better.
“We still looked a threat at times but, after the red card, the task was to kill the game and we did.
“It may not have been what the paying spectators were after but we have found a way to get the job done.
“Circumstances made it a totally different game than the ones we have had recently but the boys have now shown that they can grind out a result if they need to, which is great to see.”
With Stourbridge picking up a 4-0 win over Leiston, it means the Poppies still hold an eight-point lead at the top of the table.
But they will now have the chance to extend that advantage in back-to-back home matches against Coalville Town and Banbury United, which represent the two games in hand they have on their nearest rivals.