Match Report | Seaham Red Star (A)
A glorious, sunny afternoon played host to another vital game in the Northallerton Town battle against the drop.
A single change from last week's draw with Newcastle Benfield saw Town, field, Jack Stapley, in place of the suspended Anthony Snook, and go the bones of the lineup which had led to the club's recent upturn in form, with hopes of extending this further.
For the first time in recent games, it wasn't Northallerton who came flying out of the gates from kick-off.
Within a minute or so of the game starting, Seaham had an opportunity sent over the bar via a Mark Robinson volleyed effort before Aleks Petrovic (who hasn't lost since debuting for Town) intercepted a dangerous through ball in the opening minutes.
However, Town's good defensive performance in the opening 10 minutes was soon rewarded...
Alex Bruton received the ball out wide on the left and began to surge towards the area. Once, he had got space inside the area he smashed home to give Town a vital lead in this game.
1 - 0 Town
Following the goal, it's fair to surmise that it was all Seaham with the hosts spurning numerous half-chances, firstly, Louis Anderson firing over with a volleyed effort.
Good Town defending from a dangerous free-kick from Matthew Crust kept Seaham at bay before a slight reprieve as Shaun Ryder attempted to replicate his worldie from a fortnight ago, but could only put his effort wide.
Subsequent efforts from Seaham couldn't trouble Petrovic in the Town goal and in truth they struggled to hit the target, the last of the chances saw Thomas Bott unable to connect with a cross and spurn another opportunity.
Then, the tide turned once more...
Great work by Joey Hope down the left, saw him get free and have time to pick out Alex Bruton who passed his effort into the bottom right corner to double both his and Northallerton's tally for the day.
2 - 0 Town
With HT only a matter of minutes away, you'd be forgiven for thinking that all action had finished, but you'd be mistaken.
Seaham were awarded a penalty on the stroke of HT in what can only be described as soft by those of a Northallerton persuasion. Unfortunately for Town, and Petrovic in goal there was nothing that could be done to prevent Louis Anderson from clawing a goal back for Seaham.
2 - 1 Town
Half-Time: Seaham Red Star 1 - 2 Northallerton Town
The game took a much slower pace following the quick-fire of goals to close out the first period.
The first real opportunity of note fell to Town, with a Dale Hopson FK following a foul on RB for the day, Jack Stapley. However, Hopson could only send the effort straight at Jennison in the Seaham goal.
Luke Jones then made his 3rd appearance in a Northallerton shirt, coming on to replace Micky Rae on the hour mark.
The game then developed a bit of added spice between the two sides with alleged kicks and many a foul being accrued for both sides.
Within 10 minutes of coming on it was Luke Jones who had the game's next big chance. Shaun Ryder whipped in a great cross which found Jones but he couldn't keep the resulting header down. Seaham seemed to suggest this was a massive let-off for their side.
Seaham were still on top during the game and this pressure did result in the ball in the back of the Northallerton net on 71 minutes.
The goal was disallowed as the officials deemed there to be a foul on Aleks Petrovic in the build-up. Much to the frustration of Mark Collingwood, the Seaham gaffer was earned himself a yellow card for dissent following the decision.
Little of note to write about following the disallowed goal, introductions of both Dan Jones and Nathan Stephenson for Sean Chidanyika and goal scorer Alex Bruton were made to sure up the defensive efforts heading into the closing exchanges.
Town held firm to record their 3rd victory in their last 4 games and also extended their mini-run to 4 games unbeaten. Excellent form to be picking up toward the back end of the campaign.
Full-Time: Seaham Red Star 1 - 2 Northallerton Town
Petrovic, Stapley, Graham, Crust, Marron (C), Ryder, Bruton, Chidanyika, Rae, Hopson, Hope
Subs: L Jones, D Jones, Stephenson
Unused: Ramsbottom, Woodhouse
Goals: Bruton (10, 42)
Seaham Red Star
Jennison, Baggs, Patterson, Bott, Nelson, Donnelly, Lawson, Hailes, Anderson, M Robinson, Sayer
Subs: Lennox, Williams
Unused: Heywood, J Robinson, Patton
Goals: Anderson (45 pen)