Minstermen fade after the break
Sat 5th Jan 3pm
York City's challenge faltered after the interval as away specialists Exeter City claimed their ninth league victory of the season on their travels following a 2-1 success at Bootham Crescent.
The visitors were helped on their way when York forward Alex Rodman diverted a fourteenth-minute cross past his own goalkeeper. But Michael Potts equalised with his third goal of the season just five minutes later as the home side continued to appear the better side.
However, that was to change significantly after the break, with Jimmy Keohane reclaiming the advantage for the Devon outfit following a misplaced pass by Scott Kerr. Matty Blair proceeded to then miss York's only real chance to equalise as they slipped to their fifth home league defeat of the season.
Stalwart defender David McGurk lined-up for his 300th senior appearance as the hosts attacked towards their favoured home end during the opening half. Northern Ireland Under-21 international skipper Patrick McLaughlin twice fired over during the early stages while Daniel Parslow headed wide when former York loanee goalkeeper Artur Krysiak struggled to deal with a Jason Walker corner.
But Exeter went ahead against the run of play as Rodman steered a Jimmy Keohane cross into his own net - hardly the way for the 25-year-old to celebrate remaining at the club for the rest of the season. Nevertheless his side were soon back level when Krysiak could only block from Blair after good work down the left and Potts calmly slotted in.
York keeper Michael Ingham was then called upon to tip over a couple of efforts from Alan Gow until Walker struck a free-kick narrowly wide from outside the opposite area as the two sides went into the break still on equal terms.
That was to charge early into the second-half after the visitors made an interval change with ex-Swindon Town full-back Kevin Amankwaah coming into the action. He soon took advantage of poor defensive work and whipped in an early cross which Keohane converted at the far post despite the efforts of Ingham.
The Grecians were now appearing the far more likely side with Gow again wide from the edge of the area and John O'Flynn twice forcing stops from Ingham. Even so they could have been pegged back again when Blair raced onto Potts' through ball and chipped over Krysiak and wide of the far post with eighteen minutes remaining.
The Minstermen made changes in an attempt to find a way back, with Lanre Oyebanjo initially coming on at left-back and later pushed into a wide attacking role. But despite pressing forward they couldn't really create that much to seriously trouble the opposition.
Goalkeeper Ingham was sent forward for an injury-time corner and headed Oyebanjo's delivery wide while O'Flynn missed an even later opportunity at the other end as the visitors made it five straight victories on their travels.
York City: Ingham, Parslow, McGurk, Smith, Fyfield (Oyebanjo 64), Kerr, Potts (Reed 83), McLaughlin, Blair,
Walker (Allan 75), Rodman
subs (unused): Musselwhite, Bullock, Platt, Challinor
Goals: Potts (19)
Exeter City: Krysiak, Tully, Woodman, Bennett, Baldwin, Coles, Oakley, Doherty (Amankwaah 46), Keohane, Gow (Davies 66), O'Flynn
subs (unused): Evans, Moore-Taylor, Dawson, Chamberlain, Reid
Goals: Rodman OG (14), Keohane (53)
Ref: T. Harrington (Cleveland)
Att: 3,506 (214 Exeter)