Spennymoor Town 5, Newton Aycliffe 0
By Dan Lewis
Newton Aycliffe continued to experience pain on the road with defeat on Friday evening at the Brewery Field, against reigning FA Vase holders Spennymoor Town.
Perhaps the timing was unfortunate for Aycliffe, as for the first time this season Spennymoor Manager Jason Ainsley had a full squad of players available to choose from. The sight of his 4 players out of the squad completing a pre match running session really emphasised the strength in depth in their ranks!
Given the potency of the home side as an attacking force, boss Allan Oliver chose to go into the game with a 3-5-2 formation, allowing him the opportunity to put in an extra central defender to hopefully nullify their attacking threat.
On what was an awful night, with persistent rain throughout, Spennymoor won the toss and chose to kick uphill in the first half, giving them the advantage of coming down the slope in the second half!
Things though started very well for Aycliffe. In-form striker Jamie Owens was presented with a clear cut chance in just the 4th minute. However keeper Peter Jeffries managed to somehow block the shot, and with the rebound falling to Owens’ right foot, his shot went agonisingly the wrong side of the post.
And how we were made to pay! 2 minutes later Spennymoor took the lead. Keith Graydon’s initial shot was well saved by keeper Young, but the ball only fell to Liam Henderson, and his cool pullback found Gavin Cogdon in front of an empty net and he easily slotted home.
At the mid-way point in the first half, the home side doubled their advantage. Joe Walton’s high ball into the Aycliffe box was met by a powerful Henderson header which gave Young no chance.
And 3 minutes later, the game was effectively over! The impressive Cogdon, who worked tirelessly all night with a great individual goal. He picked the ball up 30 yards out, out-stripped the Aycliffe defence before finishing clinically across Young with his left foot, into the corner of the net.
It was to get worse for Aycliffe! Just 28 minutes on the clock and it was 4. Again Cogdon was the thorn in Aycliffe’s side. With Henderson again providing the service, the frontman completed his hat trick by rounding Young and slotting home.
A glimmer of hope for Aycliffe soon after, as Wilson released Woodhouse to run in on goal. Unfortunately however Jeffries in the Spennymoor goal was again equal to the task.
And Cogdon nearly made it 5 as half time approached but this time Young in the Aycliffe goal made a superb save to deny him.
Into the second half and kicking up hill into the wind and rain, things didn’t look good for Aycliffe!
On 58 minutes Daniel Moore shot over from 10 yards after the ball dropped at his feet from a corner. 3 minutes later his partner Chris Mason also let Aycliffe off, as from another corner he volleyed over.
But just a minute after this let off, Aycliffe did concede a 5th, as Chay Liddle steered the ball home from a tight angle following yet another corner into Aycliffe’s box.
The remainder of the game was relatively low-key as both sides accepted the result was not in any doubt!
Next up for Aycliffe is a chance to put things right with a Durham Challenge Cup tie at home to Whickham. The game kicks off at 7.30pm, with admission priced at £6 adults, £4 concessions, with all u12s once again going for free!