No FA Vase run for Alnwick as Town are thumped by Benfield
Newcastle Benfield 8-1 Alnwick Town
Well, supporting Alnwick is never dull with a 5-1 win during the week then a good old thumping in the FA Vase.
Town knew they would have a hard game as Benfield is a longstanding Northern League First Division club.
Selections for Town was complicated due to a number of missing squad players with weddings, unavailability and long term injuries, so expectations had to be realistic.
Even though the score looks like a totally one-sided game, Alnwick never gave up attacking and at half time it was 4-1, but Benfield ran away with it in the second half.
Benfield struck early when Scott McCarthy headed home from close range at the far post.
Soon after Alnwick nearly drew even when a move from Jordan Giles to Brent Aisbitt, who found Tony Brown, for Tony to slip the ball through the home defence to allow Liam Brooks to swivel and shoot just past the far post with home keeper Andrew Grainger scrambling across.
After 15 minutes Benfield made it 2-0 when Dylan McEvoy found space in mid-field just outside the box, and he had time to rifle in his shot ,giving Town keeper Sam Bouttell no chance.
Number three for Benfield came on the half hour when McCarthy connected from a cross from the left to tuck it away.
It may seem that Alnwick were not in it but to their credit they kept going forward. Town keeper Sam Bouttell was called upon when a defender was dispossessed and McEvoy ran clear but Boutell was up to the threat, making a terrific reflex save.
Alnwick were pushing Benfield back and had two great chances in quick succession, the first from a shot by Brent Aisbitt which was fumbled at the far post and only managed to push it over the bar at the last second as it was dropping in. Then it was Aisbitt again who latched onto a move from Jordan Giles to Tony Brown and Liam Brooks to allow him to hit a rising shot just over the bar to the relief of home keeper Grainger.
Benfield went four up with goals from Scott McCarthy, his second, and Paul Brayson, the first of his hat trick.
Alnwick still pushed forward and had some reward when a Brooks/Hay move resulted in Matthew Graham gaining space in front of goal and he tucked it away with confidence, so at halftime it was 4-1 to Benfield.
The second half was a reflection of the first but Alnwick had to substitute Liam Brooks as he sustained a leg injury. Dominic Schiavetta came on in his place. When your luck is down, nothing goes right, when the second hand ball in the game by Benfield was waved aside.
Further goals in the second half by Paul Brayson, who struck twice to complete his hat-trick, Matty Cornish with the eighth goal by Meeshak Kanda.
Ross Straughan came on for Tom McPherson and Ryan Douglas came on for Brent Aisbitt.
The final score was 8-1 to Benfield who thoroughly deserved their win and showed the difference between the First and Second Divisions.
Alnwick were the architects of their own downfall at times but you have to give them credit for keeping on going although the game was well past saving.
Alnwick: S Bouttell, J Giles, C Graham, T McPherson (R Straughan), G Bailes, M Graham, J Jackson, T Brown, J Hay, L Brooks (Dominic Schiavetta), B Aisbitt (R Douglas). Subs: J Lowes, D McMahon.
Next game: Saturday 17th September 2016 at home to Blyth Town.
* In midweek, Alnwick beat Esh Winning 5-1 in the league.
Liam Brooks opened the scoring after 24 minutes with a low shot.
The lead was extended through Tony Brown, whose goal made it 2-0 at half-time.
Josh Hay added a third after 53 minutes, but Langton pulled a goal back for Esh with a tap-in to make it 3-1, denying Town a clean sheet.
Gary Bailes claimed a touch from a Brown corner for the fourth and the scoring was completed with a Matty Graham half volley.