Blyth Spartans 0  – 2 Harrogate Town

29 August 2017

Harrogate Town gained their second win of the Bank Holiday weekend when they came out on top in a feisty encounter at Croft Park,Blyth.

Inside the opening minute,Town posed the first threat of the match when home keeper,Peter Jameson,had to move smartly off his line to beat George Thomson to a through ball.

However it was Spartans,with wingers,Robert Dale and Jarrett Rivers prominent,who began to dominate.

Warren Burrell and Josh Falkingham made vital blocks and James Belshaw was well positioned to save a Dale Hopson free kick.

Referee L Doughty struggled to keep the lid on a sometimes fiery contest and he issued a series of yellow cards in the first half.

With five minutes of the half remaining Town took the lead slightly against the run of play.

Terry Kennedy,who had been masterful in defence,pushed forward and with his back to goal hooked in a half cleared Thomson corner.

Unfortunately for Town,just before the break,Simon Ainge had to limp off with a groin injury to be replaced by Jack Vann.

A bright start to the second half by Town,saw Joe Leesley have a shot deflected at Jameson and then the keeper had to race out of his goal to just beat Jordan Thewlis to Jack Emmett’s through ball.

Jameson was lucky to remain on the field after scything down Leesley,but because a defender had got back to cover he only received a yellow card.

With an hour gone,Emmett picked out Thomson with a superb crossfield pass and the winger cut inside and shot against the far post with Jameson rooted to his line.

Blyth,roared on by a vociferous and partisan crowd,tested the visitors defence but sterling work by Kennedy,Burrell,Ryan Fallowfield and Ben Parker kept them at bay.

With ten minutes left,Blyth’s task was made easier when Vann was shown a straight red for a wild over the top tackle.

But Town weathered the storm and deep into stoppage time Falkingham broke clear to nutmeg Jameson to cement victory and send Town’s travelling fans behind the goal, home happy.

Belshaw,Fallowfield,Parker,Falkingham,Kennedy,Burrell,Thomson,Emmett,Ainge(c),(Vann 43),Thewlis(Gooda 82),Leesley.

Unused subs,Day,Cracknell,Middleton.

Sent off, Vann. Bookings,Fallowfield,Falkingham,Burrell,Thomson,Leesley.

Scorers,Kennedy 40,Falkingham 90.

Blyth Spartans
Jameson,Horner,Liddle,Reid,Buddle,Hutchinson,Rivers,McTiernan(Mullen 82),Maguire,Hopson(Langstaff 69),
Dale (c).

Unused subs,Watson,Butler,MacDonald.

Bookings Jameson,Reid,McTiernan,Maguire.


By John Harrison.

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