Athletic get revenge on Robins. Report by David Robinson
Relegation threatened Frickley proved too good for Ashton at Hurst Cross as they reversed the result from the opening day of the season. With Ritchie Branagan making his debut in the home goal the action got off to a slow start and after Laurie Wilson had sent a 30 yard free kick sailing over for Frickley it was midway through the half before the visitors moved ahead as a mistake by Joe Connor lead to Kuda Muskwe heading home Tyler Williams’ left wing cross.
Within a minute Connor made amends at the other end glancing home a header after Domenico Maiese had returned a corner into the area. Bradley Dockerty could have restored Athletic’s lead as he cut inside 2 defenders before shooting straight at Branagan and Ashton themselves were unlucky not to take the lead as a loose ball in the area dropped for Alex Frost to hammer against the post with Richard Smith heading the subsequent corner wide.
Within 6 minutes of the restart the visitors were back in front as Dockerty reached the by line and saw Nathan Valentine’s effort squeezed away to Williams who side footed home. Just pass the hour a fine ball from Smith released sub Matty Chadwick who was just denied at the near post by Malkowski but with 20 minutes left a forward pass found Joseph Thornton rounding the onrushing Branagan before sliding his effort home and matters could have got even worse for the hosts as a cross saw Noel Burdett’s effort bring a low save out of the keeper. As the Robins tried to hit back Chadwick headed Maiese’s corner past the far post but that was as close as Ashton came to pulling a goal back.