Winning streak comes to an end

Barton Town Old Boys 4 Bridlington Town 1
Barton Town Old Boys 4 Bridlington Town 1

Town’s four-match winning run came to an abrupt halt at the Euronics Ground taking the Swans above them in the table. A first half injury to goalkeeper Ben White did not deter the home side as they rallied their defence to shut out the visitors.

The game itself got off to an explosive start when a Ryan Nicholls clearance hit a team-mate and fell favourably for Alex Sherwood who took full advantage by laying the ball off for Gareth Barlow to strike it across James Hitchcock and into goal to give Barton a second minute lead.

Hitchcock safely gathered a fierce effort from Rikki Paylor before the Seasiders hit back. After Ombeni Ruhanduka’s lob over White had landed on the roof of the net, he had better luck on seven minutes when he fired in to equalise following a corner.

The goal spurred Bridlington on and a triangular move involving Tom Fleming, Eddy Birch and Chris Adams forced Barton into conceding another corner.

Fleming set up the next opening by winning the ball and driving towards the home penalty area but White was alert to the danger and came out to block Duka’s effort.

A Benn Lewis tackle halted Barlow in the visitors’ penalty area and a few minutes later play was held up for White to receive treatment before continuing after he fell awkwardly when challenging for a Nathan White cross with Ruhanduka. A 25-yard Gareth Owen free kick drifted wide then there were some anxious moments in the Town defence when Lewis cleared off the line and in the following melee the bar came to their rescue.

After 37 minutes White succumbed to his injury with captain and central defender Ash Dexter taking over in goal and Barlow dropping into defence. Danny Norton, recently signed from Bridlington, came on in a reshuffled 5-4-1 formation. Town were unable to breach the home defence and two minutes before the break, they conceded a second goal when Norton got behind the defence from a free kick and rolled it past Hitchcock.

The Seasiders started the second half on the front foot but tended to over-elaborate instead of testing Dexter when they had the chance. The attempts they did get on target were dealt with as Dexter twice foiled Ruhanduka and Ricketts cleared a Chris Jenkinson header, following a corner, from inside the six-yard box.

Then just after the hour two goals in four minutes from lone striker Alex Sherwood all but killed off the game. Firstly he managed to squeeze the ball past Hitchcock from a narrow angle on the left of the goal area and four minutes later he volleyed the ball over Hitchcock from the right hand side of the penalty area.

Bridlington’s man-of-the-match Tom Fleming almost reduced the areas when his shot on the turn was blocked on the line but that was as near as Town got as they failed to come to terms with the heavy pitch and a well-marshalled defence.