16th August 2014,
Morpeth Town 0
Dunston UTS 2
Dunston travelled to fellow EBAC Northern League side Morpeth Town for their first game in the 2014-15 FA Cup extra Preliminary Round. Morpeth have had a good start to the season drawing with Benfield and then beating neighbours Ashington in midweek 2 - 1 with ex-Dunston player Michael Chilton on the score sheet.
Dunston however, although not playing badly, are still waiting to open their league points account this season despite scoring 3 goals. Dunston have Chris Swailes, Stephen Harrison, David Coulson and Jonny Wightman unavailable. Scott Fenwick starts up front instead of the unlucky Dan Wilson with Danny Craggs and Gary Shaw taking their places in the back four.
Dunston got their first corner on 2 minutes but the ball was cleared by the defence,on 4 Scott Fenwick turned his man and ran at the defence, the defence marshalled his move and he was unable to get his shot in, a minute later a long throw in to the centre of goal found Bulford who played the ball over the bar. Morpeth got an opportunity on 7 minutes as Bell shot from 18 yards and Halliday was on hand to block and clear. On 11 minutes, as play moved from penalty box to penalty box , Taylor for Morpeth worked his way into the box and Connell made a good save parrying the ball away.
On 13, Fenwick put Bulford through but Bulford was ruled offside, at the other end Fry played in Taylor but he was also just offside, on 20, the industrious Taylor was played in again, his shot went across the Dunston goal to safety. On 21 Fenwick tried a shot which miscued high over the bar. Dunston were matching the home side in a very competitive midfield encounter and after 26, Scott Fenwick retrieved an over hit cross on the goal line at the edge of the 18 yard box, he turned his man after taking one more touch he shot and Dryden had to make a good save to knock it out of play.
Again Morpeth came back and Henderson put in a ball right across the Dunston 6 yard box but Chilton could not convert as he fouled Craggs in his attempts to get close. Dunston had gradually imposed themselves into the match and the hard running play of Fenwick was causing the Morpeth defence to be on their toes, on another run on 37 minutes Fenwick was pulled down in the box for a penalty and he got up himself to play the penalty kick passed the diving Dryden for 1-0 to Dunston.
Within a minute Dunston should have been two up as Bulford was played in behind the defence but instead of passing to the unmarked Ormston he tried a narrow angle shot across the goal and past the far post. Morpeth rallied and the Dunston defence held solid restricting the Morpeths sides shots on target. On 41, Grieves got in a header which Connell had to save. The first half ended 1 - 0 to Dunston in what had been a fairly evenly matched game.
On 48, Fenwick forced Dryden to make a save and after Craggs put in a curling cross from a corner into the back post which defied everyone. On 52, Taylor played Chilton in but his shot was lifted over the bar. On 53, Ormston fed Fenwickwho passed to Bulford but he also lifted his shot over the bar. Three minutes later Steven Shaw crossed and a Dixon header was cleared by Hall. Morpeth were trying hard to get the equaliser and Lancaster played a good cross field pass into the run of the on coming Henderson on 57, his cross was cleared by Craggs, again on 58 Craggs had to clear as a Lancaster cross was directed back across goal.
On 61, Bell was cautioned for Morpeth after a bad challenge on Hodgson. Morpeth broke through the Dunston back four and Connell forced the attacker wide of his box before Shaw(S) got back to clear. On 65 Gary Shaw put in a good corner to the back post but Dixon was just unable to direct his header under challenge from his marker. On 66 a Henderson free kick for Morpeth was cleared by Hodgson, the Morpeth side returned with a shot which Connell saved confidently. On 67 Dixon played a deft chip behind the Morpeth defence beating the offside trap as Fenwick ran through only to be fouled on the edge of the box. Dunston doubled their lead on 70 minutes as Fenwick headed home from 4 yards from a Craggs free kick. Morpeth introduced a substitute replacing Hall with an attacking midfield player on 71, and then were forced to replace Grieves, their other centre half, who collected a foot injury 2 minutes later.
As Morpeth battled to get back into the game Taylor was forced by Steven Shaw into the the corner of the field were Dunston were awarded a free kick, after a brief altercation both players were cautioned. In taking the free kick right near the corner flag Connell had to rush back into his goal and save as Chilton tried a long range chip from 40 yards. On 80 minutes, Halliday made a good clearance from another Lancaster cross. A minute later Steven Shaw played in Fenwick looking for his hat trick but Dryden made a block and Fenwick was then adjudged to have fouled Dryden as he attempted to collect the rebound. Morpeth were again applying pressure but the Dunston defence led by Gilhespy was holding solid and breaking up play.
The fresh Wilson was introduced on 80 minutes replacing the hard worked Bulford. Dunston held firm for the final ten minutes with Morpeth only getting 2 opportunities first on 85 when Chilton headed a Taylor cross wide and just before the final whistle Forster played a shot wide of the post.
Dunston got a deserved victory after a hard working gritty performance against a competitive Morpeth side who refused to lie down. The game hinged on two solid defensive displays by both sides, Dunston had the key through Fenwick to score twice but Gilhespy, Halliday and Co. contained the Morpeth strikers and restricted the opportunities against Connells goal. Overall a gritty performance, missing from their last two league games, earned Dunston a place in the next round at home against Durham City on 30th August.
Dunston Man of the Match: Luke Gilhespy whose solid defensive display, leading a changed back four, just shaded the forward play and goals of Scott Fenwick and the
battling midfield performance by captain Michael Dixon
battling midfield performance by captain Michael Dixon
Morpeth Town: Dryden, Henderson, Hiftle, Bell, Hall (Dunn 70), Grieves (Buchanan 73), Taylor (capt), Fry, Forster, Chiltern, Lancaster.Subs not used: Jewells, Anderson, Walmsley, Waugh, Grant.
Dunston UTS: Connell, Craggs, Shaw (G), Hodgson, Gilhespy, Halliday, Shaw (S), Dixon (capt), Fenwick, Bulford (Wilson 83), Ormston.Subs not used: Clark, Kane, Burrell, Burns
Referees, Mr. Scott Taylor, Mr. John Muligan, Mr. Scott Henry
Programme, £1:00, 10 pages, Front Cover View here
Match Pictures Here
Next game is against Jarrow Roofing on Tuesday 19th August 2014 at the Dunston UTS Stadium.
Report by T.C.