EBAC NORTHERN LEAGUE
DIVISION 1 CUP
NEWCASTLE BENFIELD v NORTHALLERTON TOWN
Despite Northallerton being in the bottom two in the league and having lost 3-1 in the league game at Sam Smith’s Park earlier in the season a tough cup game was envisaged. This was the first of two games against each other within 10 days.
Northallerton were sharp out of the traps and came close on three occasions within the first seven minutes. Firstly, with only one minute gone they had two corners which came to nothing then in the sixth minute Northallerton saw a fine effort from Shaun Ryder well saved by Benfield keeper Andrew Grainger.
On the ten minute mark a forward pass from Joe Robson found team mate Paul Brayson who advanced towards the Northallerton goal before seeing his shot at goal well defended by Northallerton central defender Thomas Marron.
A further fifteen minutes had elapsed when a great opportunity for Northallerton came their way to open the scoring, poor defending saw the ball arrive at the feet of Dale Hopson but he put his shot wide of the target.
It was then the turn of the home team to have a chance to open the scoring, Joe Robson won an aerial battle with Northallerton keeper Harry Gates heading the ball to Ryan McGorrigan who missed a great opportunity to get the first goal of the game putting the ball wide of the post.
The opening goal of the game arrived in the thirty-fifth minute when a corner to Northallerton was put away by Matthew Crust after a defensive error making the score 1-0 to Northallerton.
The last five minutes of the half saw two glorious chances come the way of Newcastle Benfield, a strong run down the Allerton right wing by Ryan McGorrigan saw his low cross to the far post just evade the inrushing, Ethan Renney.
Despite Northallerton starting the sharpest at the start of the game for the last half hour of the game Benfield were dominating the match and creating chances. The final opportunity of the first half for Benfield came in the forty-third minute, good play by Aiden Haley saw him play a fine thru ball to Paul Brayson allowing him a free run in on goal with only Northallerton goal keeper Harry Gates to beat, but unfortunately for the home team supporters a poor effort went wide of the far post keeping the score at 1-0 which it was at halftime.
Eight minutes of the second half had passed when Newcastle Benfield should have got an equalising goal, a cross from the left wing was dropped by Northallerton keeper Harry Gates giving Benfield striker Ryan McGorrigan a glorious opportunity to get an equalising goal but he put his effort over the Northallerton cross bar when he should have scored.
It looked like it was going to be one of those days when no matter how much effort or chances created that Benfield were not going to score a goal. Fifty-seven minutes had elapsed when a good cross to the far post from Peter Glen- Ravenhill gave Benfield striker Paul Brayson another opportunity to get an equaliser but to the dismay of the home supporters he headed the ball over the cross bar.
It didn’t take long for Benfield to have another glorious chance for an equaliser in the fifty-ninth minute by means of a penalty, a thru ball from Cameron Gascoigne put Paul Brayson thru on goal only to be brought down by Joseph Hope.
Although it was an obvious penalty the referee was very lenient in not sending the defender off as he was the last man when he committed the foul. After getting up it was Paul Brayson who got up to take the penalty sending Aycliffe keeper Harry Gates the wrong way to make the score level at 1-1.
Although Benfield had equalised and were starting to get on top possession wise, they were not causing any great concern to the visitors’ goal, that was until the seventy-seventh minute when a brilliant run by Aidan Haley saw his perfect cross headed wide by Paul Brayson to the relief of the Allerton keeper.
Eighty minutes had gone by when Archie Leonard a Benfield substitute for Connor Walker was unlucky not to get on the score sheet when he got on the end of a cross from the right wing only to see his well struck half volley come crashing off the Northallerton crossbar and away to safety.
Not to be too downhearted Benfield kept coming forward and were rewarded in the eighty-third minute with their second goal of the game. Good play by man of the match Aiden Haley saw him put an inch perfect pass thru for team mate RYAN McGorrigan who advanced forward to calmly put the ball past the despairing dive of Northallerton keeper Harry Gates to make the score 2-1 to Newcastle Benfield.
Time was running out for the visitors to get an equaliser but they had a chance in the eighty-fifth minute when a great ball from Shaun Rider found team mate Alex Bruton but to their dismay, he put his shot over the Benfield crossbar to the home team’s relief. The match then came to an end with Newcastle Benfield winning 2-1 and progressing to the next round.
Man of the Match … Aiden Haley.
Reporter:- Allan Young