Ashton returned to league action but despite taking the lead for the fourth game in succession were unable to deny the Seasiders. The first half was a breathless affair with play switching quickly from end to end and it was Ashton who came closest to opening the scoring as Logan’s corner was flicked on by Coppin (pictured) for Martin Pilkington to narrowly miss the near post. Lee Rick then put Logan clear in the area but he blazed over but it was another Logan corner which provided the breakthrough as captain Lynch headed home his first goal of the season.
Coppin then sprinted clear from halfway before dragging his attempt wide but the visitors were level as Farrell arrowed an unstoppable free kick into the top corner from 30 yards. The Robins should have regained the lead as Pilkington raced into the area only to be denied from point blank range by Bland and then a combination between Rick and Coppin saw the latter denied at the near post before Pilkington was again thwarted by Bland’s fingertips.
After the break a fine cross by Coppin was headed back across goal by Logan before being cleared and Rick’s pass saw Pilkington fire his effort straight at the keeper. On the hour Whitby moved ahead as a short free kick was played to Mason who finished well into the bottom corner but Ashton levelled as Pilkington was denied on the turn by Bland before Coppin forced the ball home.
With the game wide open it was no great surprise when a low cross by Rundle was immediately converted by Armstrong and Ashley Young’s backheel then produced an effort from sub O’Neill which clipped the crossbar. With 10 minutes to go Farrell struck again with another tremendous free kick from slightly nearer in than the first one and after O’Neill had clipped the bar for the second time Coppin was able to reduce the arrears as the ball fell to him in the area but Ashton were unable to prevent Whitby inflicting their first home defeat of the season.