Guisborough Town 3-5 Ashington
Ashington put a difficult week aside - which saw the resignation of manager Steve Bowey - to turn in a terrific five star showing culminating in them securing only a second win in 34 years against Guisborough at the KGV Stadium on Saturday.
Jack Butler took his tally of goals for the season to 12 as he led the way with a magnificent hat-trick whilst Chris Youldon and Wayne Buchanan also netted with excellent strikes as the Colliers – under interim manager Ian Skinner – were worthy winners.
After taking over the reins on Monday night, there had been much for Skinner to negotiate in a short space of time and the boss admitted afterwards that it had been his ‘hardest ever week in football.’ He spoke to all the players and after losing striker Zak Atkinson to Shildon, bolstered the squad by signing former midfielder Ben Sampson, Callum Tait and his newly named assistant Paul Antony.
And after making an appalling start as they conceded within four minutes from a set piece, Ashington battled back to turn the tables big style.
The evergreen Brian Close was granted a free header to net from Joe Ferguson’s in-swinging corner. But on 13 minutes they equalised when Butler netted from a rebound after his initial shot was blocked. He added a second just before the break after rounding the keeper a nd in stoppage time Lawson rattled the crossbar.
Just eight minutes into the second half it was 1-3 when Chris Youldon found the net and a rare goal from captain Wayne Buchanan made it 1-4 midway through the period.
Guisborough reduced the deficit six minutes later through Mark Robinson. They had further chances but Ashington defended well before Butler completed his treble after 88 minutes. In the second minute of time added on, Guisborough pulled it back to 5-3 when Mason McNeill drove in from a right wing cross.