Alnmouth Utd...3 Shilbottle CW Reserves...1
AN impressive second-half recovery highlighted by a brace for debutante and substitute Stuart Oman overcame Shilbottle’s slender first-half lead.
With the north wind blowing straight down the park, the visitors registered the opener on the half-hour when Stephen Gibbard’s drive from 20 yards was partially blocked by Mick Straker, which only served to skew the ball into the net past a stranded Russell Stalker.
Although Shilbottle did enjoy the balance of play before the break, the home back line of Straker, John Wilkie, Scott McEwan and Craig Rutherford worked tirelessly to keep them out, while in the early stages, home strikers Ryan Taylor and Chris Dalton missed opportunities they’d normally tuck away.
The second period began brightly for Alnmouth with sweeping moves carving out a series of chances.
Karl Taylor and Shaun Anderson combined on a couple of occasions to bring out the best from Ryan Copeland, while a Mark Oman deep diagonal cross to Anderson was also repelled by the keeper.
Another swift, expansive move involving the same players and the tireless Stephen Carey saw Ryan Taylor scoop wide from close range but the leveller did eventually arrive on 55 minutes when Anderson and Karl Taylor linked up again for the latter to slide the ball past Copeland.
Mark Oman was next to threaten with an in-swinging corner that the home players claimed crossed well over the line but the match carried on after a hook clear.
However, the advantage was gained following the introduction of Stuart Oman.
The young striker ran onto another perfect Anderson through-ball to find the target from just inside the area.
At the other end, Scott McEwan was called on to make a last-ditch block as Gary McCann was about to pull the trigger from close range and David McCann was unlucky to see his lob over Stalker swept off the line by Straker but that was after Stuart Oman had effectively wrapped up the points in similar fashion to his first to make it three.
Alnmouth: R Stalker, C Rutherford, J Wilkie, M Straker, S McEwan (L Roper), K Taylor, S Carey, M Oman, S Anderson, C Dalton (S Oman), R Taylor (L Conroy).
Shilbottle: R Copeland, J Lowes, K Lowes, D Dawson, J Dixon, D Donahoe, W Scott, W Gair, G McCann, L Pattinson, S Gibbard, J Donahoe, D Moyle, D McCann.
Alnmouth man-of-the-match: Karl Taylor. Shilbottle man-of-the-match: James Dixon. Referee: J Durrant. Match sponsor: Schooner Hotel, Alnmouth. Match ball sponsor: Johnny Blythe, Painter and Decorator.