The morose weather matched an equally glum performance from Bridlington, who fell to a 2-1 loss to Athersley Recreation.
As the rain hammered down on the Hudgell Solicitors Stadium the visitors set the tempo for what would be a frustrating game for the hosts.
Athersley’s Adam White, whose name will be mentioned a number of times in this report, was unlucky to not get the visitors into a great position, but his was hooked clear by new Town signing Nathan Peat. His block cleared the lines and ended the Rec threat.
Nathan Peat continued to be a strong influence in the Town defence throughout the game, offering the benefit of experience and, even at 35, still having the legs to keep up with the young Athersley side.
Rec’s Lee Garside was unlucky to not bag himself a goal when he found space in the Town area, his shot was narrowly wide of Tom Jackson’s right hand side post, going out for a goal kick. There were a number of let offs for both sides in the first half, but neither side came close to scoring until Athersley shocked the hosts.
Fine build up play from the Rec’s midfield began on the half way line. Adam White found himself in a rare bit of space on the edge of the Town box, and fired a powerful shot at the far corner. The shot was almost stopped by the Town keeper, but the combination of the power of the shot and the slippery conditions meant the ball slipped through Jackson’s hands and rolled into the back of the net.
Town, fuelled by a goal they didn’t feel they deserved to concede, began a period of dominance, with Jake Day and Shaquille McKenzie coming close to levelling. Both player’s shots going narrowly over the bar, with Day’s shot taking a heavy deflection from the Rec defence.
The referee called time on the first half, with Athersley going into the dressing room the happier of the two teams.
As the second half kicked off the poor weather relented for a short while. Terry Barwick produced a great header, but his effort from Lewis Dennison’s floating cross was just wide of the target.
Barwick’s efforts paid off in the 62nd minute as his shot from almost 30 yards out beat the stunned Athersley keeper, and brought the hosts back into the game. Barwick’s shot was so strong that his boot landed almost 10 yards from him, not that he was bothered, after producing a top drawer finish.
Town captain Jake Day was unlucky after his blazing run through the Rec defence was judged to be narrowly offside. Not long after Jake worked himself into an opportunity but his well placed shot was saved by an on-form Daniel Morton.
Morton was called into action on a number of occasions in the second half, and delivered a Man of the Match quality performance for the visitors. He produced a number of saves which keepers a number of divisions above would be proud of making. Unluckily for Town Morton was in Athersley colours, or the scoreline could have been much different come Full Time.
Lee Garside received a pass around 30 yards out of the Town area, but his dizzying run which bettered a number of Town players, sending them sliding completely the wrong direction, ended with him slotting home and putting the visitors into the lead.
A long break caused by a clash of heads gave both teams time to plan for the final five minutes. Town struggled to find a way to break down the visitor’s defence, whose performance was excellent in the poor weather conditions.
Unfortunately for Town it wasn’t Jake Day’s Day. He was not able to produce some of his usual magic and produce goals from nothing. However after coming back from an injury it’s perhaps too much to expect him to be up to the same form he was in last season.
It was White that came closest to sealing the victory for the visitors, but a fine save from Jackson kept Town holding out for an equalizer.
Town substitute Joe McFadyen was unlucky to not get the hosts back into the game, when his last-minute shot was deflected wide for a corner.
Hull Today’s Man Of The Match Pick
For Athersley it has to be keeper Daniel Morton. His saves quite simply kept the Rec in the game. He produced 4 or 5 top quality saves.
Bridlington Town’s man of the match is a tough pick. We had to pick Nathan Peat, his performance in defence was excellent, and he showed real desire to play for Town. It’ll be hard for Curtis Woodhouse to not pick him after today’s performance.
Bridlington Town gaffer Curtis Woodhouse will have a lot of talking points for his team after today’s performance. Some players looked out of place, while others shined even in a dull Bridlington evening.
Town host Consett in the Second Qualifier for the FA Vase next Saturday. Kick-off is at 3pm at the Hudgel Solicitors Stadium.
Look out on our Facebook Page tomorrow for a full Match Gallery from today’s game!