Robins Run Out On Top!
Jack Higgins Header One Of Three To Settle The Match. Report by David Robinson.
Seventh beat fifth in the battle of the play-off chasing teams in an entertaining encounter at Hurst Cross. On a heavy but perfectly playable surface Workington started with the wind at their backs and took advantage of this on the quarter hour as a left wing cross travelled all the way across the area allowing Scott Allison to tee up Matthew Tymon for a simple sidefoot finish for the opening goal. Ashton immediately showed what they are made of as they drew level within 2 minutes when a build up down the right saw Dale Johnson reach the by line and his cross was headed home at the far post by the diving figure of Martin Pilkington.
Pilkington’s pace then took him past Simpson but Johnson was just crowded out at the near post but Ashton moved ahead 4 minutes from the interval as Ashley Young’s free kick from wide out on the left was headed home from 6 yards out by Jack Higgins. Ashton’s two wingers switched positions just before the break allowing Kayde Coppin to pick up Pilkington’s square pass before firing a shot over the top.
Coppin was back in the action after the restart as his pass found Pilkington controlling the ball well before Johnson wasted the chance firing well wide, and Pilkington himself did no better as a goalkick bounced straight into the Workington penalty area but he comfortably cleared the crossbar. At the other end Tinnion’s cross saw Allison just fail to make sufficient contact and a quick break then saw Simpson collect Allison’s pass and force Phillips into a full length save.
Midway through the half a deep corner was headed back by Jay Gorton and the ball was then touched against the crossbar and Johnson then made a superb turn before bringing a fine save out of Jamieson. Arnison could have then brought Town level as he waltzed into the area but put his left foot effort straight at Phillips, before home substitute Martin Hill moved forward and passed to Johnson, who again brought the best out of Jamieson at the expense of a corner; but there was to be no escape – Sam Wilson heading home Kevin Leadbetter’s corner at the far post.
Hill then fired a great chance past the far post but the visitors were back in the running with 6 minutes left as the ball dropped to Arnison who brought a fine save out of Phillips but was able to roll home the rebound, and Hill then had another shot turned over by Jamieson from a narrow angle.
Steve Halford (Ashton United Joint-Manager); I thought Ashton deserved to win a must-win fixture, was happy with us going forward but less so defensively. The aim is still to win the division not just make the playoffs, and Martin Hill has settled back in well following his return from injury with the midfield also being boosted by the recent arrival of Kevin Leadbetter.
Gavin Skelton (Workington Player/Manager); Thought it was a tight game and at 2-1 could have gone either way although didn’t wish to detract from Ashton’s victory. Thinks that WT are possibly overachieving in their current league position given their available budget.
Team: Phillips, Wilson, Pearson, Gorton, Higgins, Young, Robinson, (Leadbetter 62), Gee, Johnson, Pilkington (Rick 85) & Coppin (Hill 62).
SNU: Haslam & Yarwood.