Ashington AFC

Sat 25 Aug 2018 | Ebac Northern League Division One | Away


Frenchfield Park




Helen Conley



By Brian Bennett

Ashington were denied a second away win of the season when Jonathan Murray hit an injury time equaliser for Penrith in a six goal thriller at the Frenchfield Stadium on Saturday.

The game itself lacked any real quality yet there was en explosive start to proceedings and also at the end of the first period as well as to the conclusion of the encounter played out in pleasant sunshine. The Colliers, who played well against Consett in midweek despite going down to a 3-2 defeat, had shipped 14 goals in six outings before the contest and incredibly they found themselves trailing after a mere 31 seconds. The ball was played through the inside left channel into space for Connor Shields and the centre forward never broke stride as he coolly slotted wide of advancing Ashington ‘keeper Conor Grant.

The Wansbeck side tried to get back into the game and on the quarter hour when Liam Armstrong found Lee McAndrew on the right, his dangerous cross was cleared by skipper Grant Davidson. However Steve Bowey’s side were caught out midway through the period with Shields again having a one on one with Grant but the visiting custodian made a superb block to thwart him.

The Colliers got back on terms in the 29th minute when a short worked corner on the right between Kyle Downey and McAndrew saw the latter’s low ball towards the near post flicked on and Glenn Caygill applied the finishing touch from close range. Adam Main was not far away with a snapshot from distance then at the other end, Lewis King charged through on a run into the box but his weak effort was held by ‘keeper Andrew Casson.

In the 43rd minute, Ashington went 2-1 ahead when Downey swung over another corner which saw Caygill force the ball home from almost on the goal line. But in the second minute of time added on, Main swept home the equaliser following a pull back from the right.

Four minutes after the restart, Grant was called into action, brilliantly palming away an effort from Bradley Hayton then Murray found Jordy Atkinson whose volley was held by the stopper. Murray and Atkinson put chances wide for the Cumbrians then an excellent tackle inside the area by Armstrong denied Lewis Windle. With eight minutes remaining, Ashington went into a 3-2 lead through substitute Sam Norris. Atkinson deserves great credit after he controlled a cross from the left and laid the ball off to Norris who skipped past two challenges before firing a low right footed drive across Casson and inside the far corner.

Three minutes later, the Colliers ought to have put the game to bed. Substitute Tony Stephenson cut inside the area and saw his effort parried by Casson but when the rebound fell to Downey, he too was denied by the ‘keeper.

With time running out, Grant pushed away a header from substitute Herve Buka but in the 91st minute and following a throw in from the left by Willie Paul, the ball was glanced on and fell to Murray who prodded home to level.

Ashington: Grant, King, Armstrong, Humphries (Bowey 54 minutes), Caygill, Vipond, McAndrew, Downey, Atkinson, Richardson (Stephenson 46 minutes), Cunningham (Norris 54 minutes)

Subs not used: North, McCarthy


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