The saying a game of two halves is often used to describe matches, and nothing epitomises that more than Oldham’s 1-0 victory over Dorking Wanderers.
Latics dominated parts of the first half, with Mark Kitching being a key source of chances, and Norwood being the one on the end of them.
He could have easily had a hat-trick in the first half, having chances with his head, inside the box, and two consecutive efforts denied.
It was no surprise when Oldham took the lead, Mike Fondop rocketing home from a tight angle, hitting the roof of the goal.
Dorking came out in the second half not looking like a side two places above the relegation zone, they had the lion’s share of chances and had a goal chalked off for offside, but couldn’t register an equaliser.
Attack, attack, attack was seemingly the message from Micky Mellon ahead of the match, as Athletic, mostly through Kitching down the left, but others also had their involvements.
The first major chance saw Will Sutton, looking for a goal on his 50th appearance for the club, side foot Kitching’s cross towards goal, before it was deflected wide.
Sutton turned into a provider minutes later, intercepting a poor pass to thread the ball through for Norwood, whose shot went agonisingly wide of the goal.
It was Shaun Hobson’s turn to feed Norwood next, his lobbed ball forward met the striker, but his header went just wide of the goal.
Sutton tried his hand again at notching a goal on his half-century for Latics when he made the final of a series of blocked shots, but it was pushed wide by the Wanderers defence.
Oldham deservedly took the lead just before the break, and it came following one of many set pieces.
Dorking failed to clear the ball as it pinged around the box, before Fondop took control of it, producing a thunderous effort which found the roof of the net from a slanted angle.
Latics had work to do to keep hold of the lead prior to break, Hudson had to get down to deny McManus before Carter looked to bundle the follow up over the line, but the ‘keeper recovered well to keep it out.
The hosts looked like a different team in the second period, and had a much better share of possession and significantly greater share of chances.
That’s not to Latics’ discredit though, who defended valiantly throughout the game.
Seb Bowerman really should have scored when he had a free shot at goal from a few yards out, it was a huge let off for Latics who saw the shot go wide.
Defending was required to keep the scores level moments later, Charlie Carter weaved through the tangerine shirts to get into a good shooting position, with Hobson’s last-ditch tackle proving vital to stopping the chance in its tracks.
The standout moment was undoubtedly Hudson’s fantastic double save midway through the half, who denied Jason Prior with some great reflexes, before cleaning up Bowerman’s follow up.
Dorking had their chances for the rest of the game, and definitely scared Latics, but couldn’t produce that clinical touch in the final third to get that goal they probably felt they deserved.
They thought they had when Carter was the final man in a beautiful passing move, firing past Hudson, but the linesman’s flag was up for offside, to Athletic’s relief.
Oldham: Hudson, Kitching, Hogan, Hobson, Lundstram, Fondop, Sheron, Raglan, McGahey, Sutton, Norwood.
Subs not used: Ward, Hope, Walker.
Dorking: Male, Pybus, Craig, McManus, Briggs (Joe-Taylor, 28'), Carter, Taylor, Moore (Prior, 45'), Hollis (Blair, 68'), Fuller, Bowerman.
Subs not used: Philpot, Gallagher.
Attendance: 2,534 (750)
Referee: Ryan Atkin