United in to final of the NFA Minor Cup

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PONTELAND UNITED 1

SHILBOTTLE 0

Ponteland won through to the final of the NFA Minor Cup when they beat Shilbottle in the semi-finals on Saturday.

United will now go on to meet Alnmouth United in the final, after their beat Longbenton in the other last four clash.

This was Ponteland’s first game at their Leisure Centre ground since the end of October, and they knew it would be tough against the current Alliance league leaders.

United started confidently and took the game to the visitors with both Zach Bewley and Billy Holden on the wings making penetrative runs.

However, it was Shilbottle who had the first strike at goal through Joseph Henderson but this was from distance and straight into the arms of Mullen.

Despite having the majority of the play it wasn’t until the 20th minute when Pont created their first real opportunity. Bewley and Satterthwiate combined well down the left before feeding the ball to McDermott who made space and pulled his shot just wide of the far upright.

Little was seen in the first half of the visitors dangermen and league’s leading goalscorers Liam Brooks and Josh Hay, as they were well marshalled by Ford and Spencer and at half-time it remained 0-0.

Early in the second half McDermott made a good run down the right but his excellent cross just evaded the outstretched foot of Cook United looked the more likely team to score but despite both teams scoring freely in the league it became evident one goal might be enough.

With half an hour remaining Pont broke the deadlock. Bewley got beyond his marker down the left and played a neat one two with McDermott before shooting from just outside the penalty area. The ball bounced in front of the keeper and over his outstretched arms into the corner.

Shilbottle tried to rally in the closing stages but were unable to force an equaliser and Ponteland progressed to the final (date to be confirmed).