Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Chilli back in the groove as Town sweep Whitehaven aside


Town manager Peter Mulcaster watching over another victory
A BRACE from the returning Carl Chillingsworth helped ease Town to a comfortable victory over Whitehaven on Monday evening as Peter Mulcaster's side put Saturday's capitulation at Morpeth firmly behind them.

After Steve Butterworth curled home a delightful opener midway through the first half, Chillingsworth sealed the win with two close range headers just before the break to mark his return to the side in fine style, before Col Anderson completed the scoring in the second half.

"It was a much better performance tonight," said Mulcaster at the whistle. "It was a difficult start but once we got in front it was fairly comfortable. We could have scored two or three more in the second half but it is a very good result for us in the end."

Captain Danny Shoulder was equally pleased with the performance, especially the first half. "That makes up for Saturday," he said, also at the whistle. "It was important we put that behind us. Some of the older lads tired in the second half but we got the job done and we will go again on Wednesday."

With Grant Hickman on holiday and Mickey Dunwell, Ian Smurthwaite, Steve Banks and Dave Alderson all unavailable, Mulcaster made changes to the side beaten 6-0 two days earlier. So Craig Winter, Andrew Porritt, James Bowman, Anderson and Chillingsworth all returned to the starting XI.

In a subdued atmosphere more resembling a pre-season friendly, Town started slowly but Anderson sparked them to life with a thrilling run down the right in the 17th minute which nearly forced an own goal from Kevin Law.

And Town did go in front five minutes later. Gav Parkin played a short corner to Butterworth on the left-hand edge of the area and he curled the ball past goalkeeper Brian Miller from 20 yards - a great way to end his 21-match goal drought.

Steve Butterworth, right, celebrates his goal with Gav Parkin and Craig Winter
Emson then fired wide after combining with Anderson and Chillingsworth, before Chillingsworth doubled the Town advantage five minutes before the break. The veteran striker, who had not played for the previous month following a family bereavement, was in the right place to head into an empty net after a lovely cross from the left by Emson.

And it was 3-0 in first half stoppage time. Parkin whipped a corner from the left to the far post where Anderson headed back across goal for Chillingworth to nod home from close range.

Mulcaster made a change at the break with Jon Burton, proving his fitness for the cup final, replacing Winter at the back, and it was nearly 4-0 within two minutes of the restart. The Whitehaven defence failed to clear another Parkin set piece delivery and after a game of pin-ball in the penalty area, Emson hit the post from close range.

It was destined not to the Town leading scorers' night as he was later denied by Miller after being put through by Butterworth, while Butterworth himself saw a chip saved by the Whitehaven stopper soon after.

But Town did grab a fourth on the hour. Again Parkin created the opportunity with a delicious free kick from the left and Anderson arrived at the far post to head past Miller.

Col Anderson, number 11, nips in front of Carl Chillingworth to head the Town 4th
Anderson then hit the post with a carbon-copy move six minutes later before being replaced by Academy graduate David Cooke. However, Cooke lasted only four minutes before pulling up with a hamstring injury and was replaced himself by fellow-Academy player Curt Tasker.

Whitehaven, who struggled to get out of second gear all night, were close to a late consolation when Matt Tymon hit the post from 6 yards following a Stuart Shaw free kick, but Town finished on top.

Tasker almost grabbed his first goal for the club when he was just unable to get on the end of Emson's drilled cross from the left five minutes from time, while Emson then fired wide from 25 yards.

Town will bring their league campaign to a close when Thornaby are the visitors on Wednesday evening.

"We know that if we win on Wednesday we will finish 6th, which will make it a good season," said Mulcaster. "We were 8th when I took over so there has been an improvement in league position, and of course we have reached the cup final."

More Town celebrations.
The date and venue for that cup final has been confirmed as Monday 6 May at Billingham Synthonia. Kick off is 12 noon. Town are running a bus to the game which leaves the ground at 10.30am. The clubhouse is open for breakfast from 9am.

TOWN - Briggs, Porritt, Bowman, Shoulder, Winter, Parkin, Butterworth, Laing, Chillingsworth, Emson, Anderson. Subs - Burton, Cooke, Tasker, Hudson.

WHITEHAVEN - Miller, Brown, Smith(S), Smith(J), Law, Bragg, Quayle, Tymon, Hodgson, Shaw, Robson. Subs - Dustin, Pettitt.

REFEREE - S. Henry


*Pictures courtesy of Paul Gaythorpe at Pk4Images. Not to be reporduced without permission

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