First round heartache as Cougars crash out.
Ashington suffered an agonising cup defeat against A league opposition today.
Broadbridge Heath proved to be a very competitive side, well schooled in the basics of earning the right to play.
Indeed, the game will have provided a great learning experience for the team, as to what is required to compete at the top table of the HDYFL.
Although falling just short the team should be proud of their display.
Ashington started the brighter side. Dominating possession for the opening few minutes. The side took a well deserved lead early on. Gorman drove into the final third from the left side of central midfield. He laid a deft pass out to Morgan who sprinted into the box and placed a shot low across the full stretch keeper. The ball deflected back off the post. Hanley , like all good strikers, followed in and slotted the ball home.
From the restart, Ashington, continued to dominate and played some excellent passes. The second goal just wouldn’t go in. Lowdell, Bicknell and Paisley were functioning well as a unit defensively and the game looked under control.
Unfortunately, football is a cruel game and all the great work was undone by an excellent breakaway by BBH. Possession was lost high up the pitch on the left hand side. BBH sprung on the counter. Moving the ball, at pace, down the right side and the move was finished with a low finish after the cross from the right. 1-1 game on!
Ashington continued to create many chances but began to look unusually shaky in defence. BBH capitalised on this to take the lead before half time. 2-1 to BBH.
Wheatley performed well in goal making two excellent diving saves to keep the side in touch at half time.
The team took on board the half time advice. The ball should never be allowed to bounce from opposition goal kicks and long balls. A basic part of the game the defence have proved more than capable of in the preceding three league performances.
Ashington started the second half well passing and pressing. But, as in the first half they looked vulnerable to direct play from BBH.
Allowing the long balls to bounce and not attacking the second ball ultimate led to BBH running up a further two goals: one from a penalty and one with the BBH centre forward lifting the ball over the keeper high into the roof the net. 4-1 to BBH.
The score line provided Ashington with the opportunity to show their desire and character to get back into the game. They didn’t disappoint.
The team puffed their chests out and gave the comeback a great go.
They began to win the second ball and impose themselves better. Hanley came into his own, leading the line against a physical onslaught from the BBH defence.
Easdale, Morgan, Brockhurst, and Gorman threw themselves into the attack. Mace, Goodchild, Booth and Alcott did a sterling job containing the BBH counters.
A quick response came from Booth prodding in a rebound. 4-2 to BBH.
Then Gorman had an ripping low drive cannon back off the inside off the post. Further chances fell to Booth, Easdale, Hanley and Morgan. Credit to the team for creating these chances on target but, the BBH goalkeeper save well from them all.
4 minutes from time Goodchild played a well weighted long ball over the defence. Hanley accelerated behind the BBH defence beating the keeper to the bouncing ball, finishing low into the net. 4-3 to BBH
For the remaining minutes Ashington continued to push for a late equaliser to force a penalty shootout. However, the breakthrough didn’t come and BBH ran out winners 4-3.
The result will sting but the side can use this experience going forward for the rest of their league campaign. The players are all bright enough to see where things went wrong and how they can improve as a group. They are heading in the right direction.
Keep you chins up and be proud of your efforts today.
Captain: Tom Easdale.
MOM: Ewan Booth