Ashington AFC

Wed 23 Sep 2020 | Ebac Northern League Division One | Away


Frenchfield Park




Stephen Dial



By Brian Bennett

Ashington picked up their first league points of the season with a thoroughly deserved 2-0 victory over Penrith at The Frenchfield Stadium on Wednesday night.

Goals in the opening quarter hour from Ben Harmison and Dean Briggs put the Colliers into a commanding position and they should have added to their tally in a one sided first half. The second period was a more even affair with the Cumbrians looking to get back into the contest whilst Ian Skinner’s side were itching to put the game to bed. Penrith are always a hard nut to crack especially on their home turf borne out by the fact that this was Ashington’s first victory in six visits.

They again played some scintillating football and made the perfect start by breaking the deadlock after exactly 100 seconds.

In the opening minute, Brandon Slater had been denied by ‘keeper Luke Miller and it was the winger who combined with Ben Harmison in a one-two which saw the centre forward whip the ball into the net. Slater was heavily involved in the action with his pace causing the Penrith backline problems and in only the fourth minute, another direct run by Slater resulted in home skipper Grant Davidson receiving a yellow card for a blatant body check. Miller pushed away from Briggs then Harmison headed wide a cross from the left by Ben Gaffney. It was one way traffic and it came as no surprise when the Colliers doubled their lead through Briggs following a great incisive move. Max Cowburn was the provider for Briggs who struck his fifth goal in four games with the assistant flagging to signal that the ball had crossed the line.

A free-kick by Cowburn was punched out by the home stopper then Karl Ross found Cowburn down the right flank and his centre went across the face of goal. On the half hour, Briggs and Gaffney linked on the left but when the latter put the ball into the box, Slater failed to get a proper connection. Then just before the interval, another brilliant move saw Harmison lay off a cross by Cowburn for Briggs whose effort was blocked. It appeared that the pattern for the second period was going to be similar as within the first 30 seconds, Briggs had a shot blocked and Harmison fired the rebound wide. However, the hosts had other ideas and in the 52nd minute, a drive from Ben Clarke was cleared off the line by Ashington skipper Curtis Coppen.

Ashington were resolute with ‘keeper Adam McHugh not required to perform any heroics and although the action was fast and furious, chances evaporated until the final stages. Briggs had two efforts pushed away by Miller who also denied Harmison – then in the final minute of the 90, a low cross from substitute Ben Sampson saw the home side somehow block the ball on the line to deny Harmison.

Ashington: McHugh, Kalthoeber, Gaffney, Emmerson, Coppen, Bramley, Cowburn (Sampson 80 minutes), Ross, Harmison, Briggs (Scott 85 minutes), Slater (Taylor 76 minutes

Subs not used: Anderson, Grant (gk)


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