TNS secured the title with a goalless draw at closest rivals Connah’s Quay Nomads on Friday night.
And though the post-match celebrations were somewhat low key – with the trophy presentation to come another day – boss Craig Harrison hailed his side for a monumental achievement.
“It’s fantastic,” he told Sgorio after the game. “The lads have done fantastic – to get it won still with five games left is testimony to the boys in the dressing room.
“They’ve got a fantastic mentality, a winning mentality.
March 17, 2023
“We didn’t get the win today – it was a tough game in tough conditions – but we stuck in there for a clean sheet.
“If we’re not going to win the game then we want a clean sheet – another clean sheet – so I’ve got to take my hat off to the boys and the staff.”
Harrison made one change to the side that beat Bala Town 2-1 in the Saints’ 1,000 match on Monday.
Chris Marriott returned at left-back, allowing Danny Redmond to push into midfield, with Jon Routledge dropping to the substitutes’ bench.
TNS dominated the first half in terms of possession and territory, but with Connah’s Quay sitting deep there were few opportunities for either side, with the visitors unable to intricately pick the lock of the Nomads’ backline.
Ryan Brobbel went the closest in the 14th minute when his curling effort required a strong hand from home goalkeeper Andy Firth to turn the ball over the crossbar.
Leo Smith brushed the side netting with an effort that almost crept inside the near post just past the 25-minute-mark, while the Saints were perhaps also unfortunate to be denied a penalty when a scramble on the edge of the penalty area led to a shot from Declan McManus that appeared to strike the arm of Connah’s Quay captain George Horan.
McManus forced Firth to palm the ball over the crossbar early in the second half, while Danny Davies fired straight at the keeper as well as the game began to open up.
Routledge and Ash Baker were thrown into the action on the hour-mark, with TNS moving to a back three , but it initially seemed to be a move that handed Connah’s Quay some impetus.
And the Nomads had their first real sight of goal when the ball broke to Paulo Mendes in the penalty area, with Smith and Ash Baker quick on the scene to deflect the ball away for a corner.
Firth continued his fine form to making a diving save from McManus’s curling effort with 20 minutes to go, while Ben Nash got in behind the TNS defence at the other end, with Marriott – now operating at the heart of the back three – rushing across to put him off.
Brobbel also curled a free-kick over, but the Saints’ crucial point was secured by a wonderful save from goalkeeper Connor Roberts, who reacted superbly to fingertip Horan’s poked effort over the crossbar inside the final 10 minutes.