Ponteland beat the league leaders
Ponteland 4-0 Seaton Delaval
After the disappointment of conceding an equaliser in the last minute last week United welcomed current league leaders Seaton Delaval to the Leisure Centre. Manager McIvor had some enforced changes to make with Spencer, Benjamin and Zac Bewley all unavailable along with Dan Mullen and Fearns-Kennedy. United did however welcome back in goal Craig Whinham
Despite the change in personnel United started well and a good move involving Havelock-Brown, White and Stephenson ended with Carr finding the net from Stephenson’s cross but was adjudged offside At the other end the hard working Mason Stephenson put his body on the line to block a powerful shot by dangerman and leagues leading scorer Matthew Hayton.
On 15 minutes Pont got their noses in front when White played an exquisite through ball for Carr but a defensive collision between two defenders allowed the ball to run free for centre forward Carr to advance goalwards and poke the ball past Korsbo.
Delaval had a real chance ten minutes later when the speedy Baxter latched onto a long ball down the left and headed towards the goal line. From a tight angle his shot come cross across the goal area missed the far post and also evaded the outstretched leg of the inrushing Gladstone to run away for a goal kick.
Shortly afterwards a freekick from Michael Trodd was headed over by Hayton under pressure from Stephenson. The match was developing into a good contest with both teams playing some good football. Jones and L’Argent at the back for Pont were keeping the dangerous Baxter and Hayton at bay with Holden and Stephenson always in support. The ball players in midfield for Pont were all having a good afternoon and increased the lead on the half hour mark. White, Havelock-Brown and Ethan Bewley all combined well before Bewley saw his shot saved by Korsbo but the rebound came out to Havelock-Brown who, unlike last week despatched the ball into the back of the net.
As the half came to a close the visitors were looking to get back into the game and it took two timely tackles in quick succession by Paul Jones mid way in his own half to keep them at bay.
With rain starting to fall heavily the visitors decided to go into the changing rooms at half time to regroup and try to get back into this game. However they found United in a confident mood and this continued into the second period. Hibbitt and White had obtained control of midfield and with Havelock-Brown having his best game of the season the team maintained control. The playmaker found Ethan Bewley heading towards goal down the right but his cross from the goal line was just too close to the keeper with Cook and Carr up in support for a pull back. Bewley who was also having a good spell collected a weak clearance from the keeper and despatched the return powerfully goalwards but Korsbo had re positioned himself quickly to collect the ball into his chest. At the other end Mikel Thompson found himself one on one with Whinham but the returning custodian blocked the shot and the ball was cleared. Nathan Ray then pulled a shot wide of the upright without troubling Whinham. The brief period of pressure from Delaval then ended with twenty minutes remaining. Again good play from Pont ended with Havelock-Brown advancing forwards towards the penalty area and a sudden change of pace deceived the chasing defender who brought him down for a stone wall penalty. Hibbitt despatched the spot kick firmly into the net.
Five minutes later it was definitely game over. Sam White who had had another fine afternoon pinched the ball to the left of midfield and played a ball over the top between the defence and the keeper. As the keeper hesitated Ethan Bewley nipped in and managed to touch the ball past the keeper before flicking the ball into the net.
This prompted McIvor to introduce two teenagers Kane Gellately and Bailey Garwood for the final fifteen minutes Both no doubt enjoyed the experience. Gellately made a good block to deny Baxter after he had turned Jones and Garwood was totally composed on the ball down the left.
Delaval’s day was summed up when late on Trodd fired a free kick from just outside the area way over the bar.