Champions stay on course for repeat success in cup campaign
Published at 09:06, Monday, 30 July 2012
THE holders of the Clayton Cup breezed into the semi-final of the competition after thumping Ponteland United 5-1.
Wallington took a huge step to retaining their crown with a comfortable success over their Northern Alliance Division One rivals.
The result will be a blow for Ponteland who, after fearing for their future following relegation from the Premier Division last year, thought they had turned a corner and were ready to challenge for the trophy.
Wallington got off to a flyer with young winger Sam Walton netting with the game just four minutes old.
But they were pegged back with Liam Anderson levelling for Pont after 21 minutes, only for Josh Gilmartin to regain the lead for Wallington six minutes later.
It was to get worse before the break for United, with the Greens opening a two-goal margin when John Paxton found the back of the net.
High flying Wallington, who won both the Clayton Cup and the Northumberland FA Minor Cup last year, threatened to run away with it when Dan Thompson made it four just two minutes into the second half.
The scoring was rounded off on the hour mark when Jake Walton joined his older brother on the scoresheet to confirm Wallington’s place in the semis.
They will play Prudhoe Town, of the Wearside League, after they defeated Northern Alliance Division Two outfit Alston by four goals to nil.
But it was not as comfortable for the Citizens as the scoreline suggests, Alston playing their part in an entertaining game and almost breaking the deadlock on 13 minutes when Dan Alexander hit the crossbar.
Prudhoe, though, had no problems finding the back of the net, Natan Burrell netting from the penalty spot on 20 minutes before Shaun Brooks hit a 30 yard screamer to give them a two goal advantage.
Alston again hit the woodwork after the break, but the game was put beyond their reach when former Stocksfield winger Ed Brazier scored a pearler from 25 yards out to make it three.
There was still time for Michael Smith to net for Town to take the margin to four goals and send the Wearsiders through on the back of a convincing victory.
The highest ranking team in the competition made their way through to the semi-finals, Northern League outfit Ryton and Crawcrook Albion booking a final four match-up with Stocksfield.
And it was the steepest learning curve for new side Corbridge United U21 whose first experience of senior football was a harrowing one.
Ruthless Ryton put nine without reply past the youngsters, although Corbridge should not be too disheartened by a good performance against a very good side.
United played well in the opening period, managing to keep it goalless for 22 minutes before Paul Blakey broke the deadlock.
Still, they battled away and did well to restrict their experienced hosts to just three goals at half-time, Dan Iredale and Mark Fitzpatrick getting on the scoresheet.
Corbridge continued to plug away but ran out of steam after the restart, going five down after 72 minutes with strikes from Craig Jelly and Paul Dunn.
And Ryton’s superior fitness told in the remaining 10 minutes, Liam Callaghan scoring twice, Mark Fitzpatrick getting his second and David Fitzpatrick one to finish the rout.
The draw for the Clayton Cup saw Wallington host Prudhoe or Alston and Ryton entertain Stocksfield on Wednesday night.
Ponteland welcomed Alston or Prudhoe in the semi final of the Stan Jackson Cup on the same evening, while Hexham and Corbridge United battle it out for a place in the final at Allendale tonight.
The final of the Stan Jackson Cup will be held at Allendale on Monday evening, with the Clayton Cup final at Haydon Bridge on Friday (August 3).
Published by http://www.hexhamcourant.co.uk