Bainbridge injury mars excellent win for Ashington at Billingham

ASHINGTON got back on track with a win over Billingham Town on Tuesday night.

Shaking off the shackles of Saturday’s FA Carlsberg Vase exit at the hands of Bodmin Town, the Colliers ran out 4-2 winners at Bedford Terrace in their Ebac Northern League encounter.

However, whilst the three-pronged strike force of Glen Taylor, Andrew Johnson and Phill Bell all found the net, it was clearly a night to forget for fellow striker Gareth Bainbridge, who was injured and later taken to hospital with what appeared to be a shoulder injury having only been on the field for 13 minutes as a substitute.

The Colliers began well and after a half volley by Matty Grieve had been turned over by keeper Dan Molyneux, they took the lead in the seventh minute.

Paul Antony found Mark O’Dea and his through ball for Johnson saw the forward accelerate into the box before firing past Molyneux.

Glen Butterworth struck wide for the hosts then in the 20th minute an equaliser appeared to be on the cards when Harrison Davies slipped the ball through for Nicky Martin, but after cutting inside, his shot was blocked by Dryden.

Sixty seconds later Ashington added a second.

Johnson flicked the ball on for the overlapping Darren Lough, who took it to the byline before squaring for Bell – making his first start since returning from injury – and he had the simple task of applying the finishing touch from close range.

The crowd were being treated to a fine contest with Billingham also playing their part, and on the half hour – albeit against the run of play – the home side reduced the deficit with Davies slotting the ball through to Martin who drove into the corner of the net from 12 yards.

However, three minutes later Ashington restored a two-goal cushion.

Johnson floated over a corner from the right where Glen Taylor’s bullet like header from six yards was perfectly placed inside the stanchion.

Right on half-time, a deep corner by Johnson was played back across by Glen Taylor and hoofed off the line by a defender.

The Wansbeck side made a great start to the second period with a fourth goal inside three minutes.

Andrew Dugdale’s pass saw the ball find Glen Taylor after a step over by Johnson and the ex-Spennymoor man cut inside before planting a low right footer which gave Molyneux no chance.

Martin had a shot turned away by Dryden then came Bainbridge’s painful injury before Johnson tested Molyneux with a free kick and then saw a header cleared off the line.

Substitute Jordan Mellish’s header was denied by the crossbar, but when play switched in the second minute of time added on, Davies let fly with a left footer from fully 25 yards which took a deflection and left Dryden rooted to the spot as it crept inside the far post to register Town’s second.

Ashington: Dryden, J Taylor, Lough, Antony, Atkin, Grieve (Mellish 49 mins), Johnson, Dugdale, Bell (Bainbridge 60 mins), (Godsmark 73 mins), G Taylor, O’Dea. Subs not used: Hodgson, Williams.