Darlington Road – Ebac Northern League Division 1.
Attendance – TBC.
An off-form Hebburn Town slumped to their second successive league defeat as they were well beaten by West Auckland Town.
John Campbell had a chance to fire the hosts into the lead after five minutes but Dan Regan saved well with his feet to thwart the West dangerman.
The Hornets actually shaded the opening periods but then gifted West three goals to go in at half-time out of the game.
Mattie Moffat opened the scoring after 31 minutes when he finished from the left of the box after Regan had once again saved well from Campbell.
Six minutes later, Campbell was released into the right channel of the box and saw his low cross just elude the sliding Elliot Gardner, with the ball clipping Dan Kirkup to go out for a corner. Hebburn half-cleared the corner but when Aaron Croft failed to press hard enough, the ball found Richard Paxton on the edge of the box who struck his team’s second goal of the evening.
West Auckland were then gifted a third goal on the stroke of half-time when Paul Wardle played a pass in his defensive third of the field straight to Campbell who had no hesitation in unleashing a shot past Regan.
West Auckland were well in the ascendancy during the second-half as Hebburn failed to attack with any potency, despite the hard work of Tony Stephenson and Paul Gardiner. Despite their attacking thrust, West, playing as though this was a training game at times, failed to make an early breakthrough after the re-start.
Hebburn had a glimmer of hope with fifteen minutes remaining when Scotty Robson released Stuart Nicholson down the right. Nicholson’s low cross was turned in at the back post by the sliding Stephen Forster.
Yet with the next attack, West extended their lead back to three goals when Paul Garthwaite struck a fourth from inside the box.
The South Tynesiders were denied a penalty in the closing stages when the assistant referee ignored a clear handball by Phil Gray, who threw an arm out at a Forster cross. However, even a converted penalty would have suggested a closer game than this was.
Hebburn’s focus now turns to Saturday’s home clash against Dunston UTS, who defeated West Auckland at Wembley in May to clinch the FA Vase and who also hammered the same team in a Vase re-match last Saturday, running out 5-0 winners.
With two defeats on the bounce, manager Paul Bennett still finds himself in a higher position in the table than many expected at the start of the season as Hebburn dropped to eighth position after this result, dropping below Bishop Auckland due to goal difference.
|1. Dan Regan|
|3. Adam McGuinness|
|4. Jonny Davis|
|5. Paul Wardle|
|5. Dan Kirkup|
|6. Chris Jewels|
|7. Stephen Forster||Goal|
|9. Stuart Nicholson||Yellow Card|
|10. Aaron Croft|
|8. Paul Gardiner|
|9. Tony Stephenson||Yellow Card|
|2. Callum Charlton|
|8. Scott Robson|