United sweep aside cup challenge from Walker
Published at 09:09, Monday, 15 October 2012
Ponteland United 5Walker Central 0
DIVISION One’s Ponteland United went nap at the weekend as they removed Premier Division strugglers Walker Central from the Northumberland FA Senior Benevolent Bowl.
For the first time this season, they plundered five goals but, more importantly, kept a clean sheet for the first time as they progressed past the first round.
A couple of changes were enforced on them as Ryan Carter resumed duties in goal in the absence of Gareth Powell, while Alex Patterson was given a first start in midfield in place of the injured Stephen Rae and Marc Findlay.
The black and whites could not have wished for a better start when Paul Ford floated an inviting ball from the left into the path of Patterson. The midfielder’s header hit the post but he collected the rebound and cut inside the defender before firing past keeper David Watts with only two minutes on the clock.
The Pont lads grew in confidence and sprayed the ball around the pitch, their excellent build up play creating chances galore.
Craig Cook had a great opportunity when Ford played him through one-on-one with the keeper but the number one won this particular challenge.
The big striker was to get one up on his opposite number though when he stooped at the near post to head on Ford’s cross from the right on the half hour.
Liam Anderson was next to go knocking for Ponteland as he was played through but Watts got a sufficient touch on the shot to slow it down for the ball to be cleared off the line.
Little was seen of Walker as an attacking force in the first half and they were restricted to shots from distance, although one nearly caught Pont out as it got a deflection but Chris Armstrong’s awareness stopped the danger and cleared for a corner.
At the other end, Paul Hodgson received a short corner and forced a finger tip save from Watts.
Two minutes before half time, Patterson crowned an excellent first half display when he played Ford through on goal and the striker raced clear of the defence to finish clinically.
Ponteland were well worth their lead at the break as the defence looked solid and the strikers seemed like they could score at every opportunity.
The second half followed the same path with United dominating proceedings, Patterson finding the back of the net with a cool finish only to find out the linesman had flagged for offside.
With half an hour remaining, Ponteland manager Michael Havelock gave a debut to Ponteland cricketer Dan Wright as he replaced Cook, and the debutant looked lively, bringing another dimension to Pont’s play.
Ponteland weren’t finished and, with 15 minutes to go, teenage defender Jack Bell swept home a Roy Gordon corner. At the death, Billy Holden, who had also come on as a late substitute, finished the best move of the match as Armstrong dummied Wright’s cross to confuse Watts and Holden side footed into the unguarded goal.
Despite some changes in personnel, Ponteland put in another excellent all round performance, both individually and collectively, and the team now need to show some this type of consistency in the matches ahead.
They are again up against Premier League opposition when they take on Shankhouse in the second round of the Kicks Leisure George Dobbins League Cup tomorrow
Published by http://www.hexhamcourant.co.uk