Bedlington Terriers concede eight to Dunston in league opener

Bedlington Terriers take on Dunston UTS in what turned out to be a terible start to the new season for the home side as they lost 8-0.
Bedlington Terriers take on Dunston UTS in what turned out to be a terible start to the new season for the home side as they lost 8-0.

Bedlington Terriers began their Northern League campaign in the worst possible way as they were thrashed 8-0 by Dunston UTS at Welfare Park.

Adam Wilkinson and Daniel Halliday capitalised on some poor defending from the opening two corners and put the visitors two up inside 19 minutes.

Dunston then hit Bedlington for six in the second half with some clinical finishing as substitute Malkie Morien scored a ten-minute hat-trick.

The Terriers went into the game with a new squad after a summer rejuvenation, and they started brightly.

Marc Walton and Paul Stoneman both had opportunities inside the first seven minutes, with the latter having a free header from an in-swinging Andy Ferrell corner.

However, Dunston took the lead with their first effort, Alex Francis whipped in a dangerous corner and the unmarked Wilkinson tapped in at the back post.

The lead was doubled nine minutes later, again from a corner, Francis’ short cross found Halliday who rifled home from close-range.

Bedlington’s woes may well have been worse as moments later UTS broke from the back again but Francis fired his shot wide.

Dunston’s front three of Matthew Briggs, Andrew Bulford and ex-Terrier Steven Richardson caused problems with their strength and pace.

Richardson had a free run at goal form almost the halfway line after evading Liam Davison’s challenge, but Dan Staples produced an outstanding save after closing the striker down.

The goalkeeper was called upon again a minute later, this time Richardson provided an inch-perfect pass to Bulford but Staples kept him out.

Youngster Tom Skidmore took a knock after a heavy challenge after 30 minutes and Staples took a blow to the head following a brave attempt to collect the ball.

Skidmore came off for Keelan Nellis, but the keeper carried on and produced some excellent saves to keep Dunston’s lead at just two.

Bedlington started to find their feet in the game, but did not manage to record a shot on target in the final 15 minutes of the half.

On the stroke of half-time, the visitors may well have scored their third, but Briggs’ shot was off target.

Just four minutes into the second half Dunston scored their third though Bulford’s powerful header after Francis found the striker with another superb cross.

The hosts’ heads dropped and Briggs made Lance McGlen pay for a mistake as the forward easily dispossessed the defender and made no mistake with the finish from 25 yards.

The long-ball over the top caught Bedlington out for the second time in the game with 22 minutes remaining as Richardson used his pace and slotted his shot under the keeper.

Morien replaced Bulford soon after and he made an impact as another ball found its way through the defence and the striker fired home after rounding Staples.

The substitute then bagged his second and third, his second goal coming from a header following Liam Thear’s looping cross and the hat-trick goal five minutes from time.

Staples was called upon ondce more in injury time, tipping over Francis’ long-range effort.

The second half had been one-way traffic with Dunston ruthless in attack.

Bedlington now face Newcastle Benfield, who were heavily beaten by Shildon, on Wednesday night.

Terriers: Staples, L McGlen, Skidmore (Nellis 29), L Davison (Stephenson 58), Little, Stoneman, McBride (K McGlen 61), Ferrell, Walton, Briggs, Hudson. Subs Not Used: Nairn, Harvey.