Flying Robins Into Next Round
Report by David Robinson
Ashton progressed to the 3rd Qualifying Round of the FA Cup following a comfortable victory over their near neighbours at the Abbey Stadium. Dale Johnson had already missed a great chance for the visitors when Martin Pilkington found space still in the opening exchanges and saw the unmarked Johnson head home his left wing cross with just 4 minutes elapsed.
Abbey Hey could have struck back as Sam Hind headed Brad Robinson’s free kick over the bar and should have equalised on the quarter hour as Hind beat Joe Connor to a through ball and rounded Phillips who conceded a penalty but ex-Robin Brad Robinson saw Phillips make the save low to his right. Sam Freakes then forced Phillips into a tumbling save to keep out his free kick whilst at the other end McIlwaine was fortunate to get away with fumbling Matty Chadwick’s cross with no one on hand to take advantage. The hosts again threatened as Flanagan headed Robinson’s free kick over the top from inside the 6 yard box.
With 5 minutes of the half remaining Cavell Coo’s left wing cross rebounded for Johnson to fire home his second from close range and the forward was then brought down by Robinson who was dismissed as the last defender on the advice of the linesman.
The Robins began to dominate the possession after the break with their man advantage and Chris Baguley had a shot blocked from Johnson’s knock down before with 20 minutes left Ashton’s third goal arrived courtesy of Matty Chadwick as he put a cross straight on to Aaron Burns’ head and 9 minutes later a fine move saw Adam Morning’s pass allow Burns to reach the by line and his cross saw Joel Melia provide a fine finish off the left hand post.
With a couple of minutes left a pinpoint cross by Will Haining was headed wide by Joe Connor from a great position and there was still time for Johnson to set up Burns who was then brought down by keeper Jonathan McIlwaine who was also red carded leaving Johnson to complete his hat trick from the spot.
Team: Phillips, Mason, Coo, Gorton, Connor, Haining, Chadwick, (Melia), Gee, Pilkington (Burns), Johnson, Baguley (Morning). SNU: King, Sutherland, Vincent, Hindley.