Report | Whitley Bay 3-4 West Allotment Celtic
Updated: Dec 20, 2021
Goals from Guy Bates, Matty Hayton and Mikel Thompson ensured that we continued our brilliant form and defeated Whitley Bay after coming from behind.
The victory at Hillheads Park moves us up to 14th in the Division One table and just four points off the top half with games in hand.
It wasn't a straight-forward victory to say the least. Whitley Bay took an early lead with just 7 minutes played through Malcolm Morien. The Bay's lead was cancelled out by Guy Bates midway through the first half.
The hosts responded in quick-fashion and managed to retake the lead just a few minutes later as Morien grabbed his second of the game. Defender Scott Lowery made it 3-1 going into the half-time interval.
A spirited second-half display from West Allotment resulted in a complete turnaround. Two goals from Matty Hayton in a matter of minutes and a Mikel Thompson strike 13 minutes from time claimed all three points for Allotment - Jay Bates' side have now picked up 25 points from a possible 33 in our last eleven games.
Despite going a goal down after 7 minutes, it was West Allotment who started off the brighter of the two teams. On 4 minutes, Guy Bates swung the ball into the box and Hayton's connecting header came back off the crossbar only for Thompson to put the rebound inches wide from close-range.
The opening goal was a brilliant strike by Malcolm Morien on 7 minutes, nothing that Finn Hodgson could have done to stop it. The striker took aim from about 25 yards and fired the ball into the top corner to give the Seahorses the lead.
Whitley's lead was taken away from them on 24 minutes. Guy Bates, who was returning to the side, was the man on target. A cross from Luke Parkinson wasn't cleared and eventually, after some pinball, Bates was in the right place to fire past Dan Lister and get us back on level-terms.
The score level was short-lived. Morien grabbed his second of the game on 28 minutes after The Bay punished Allotment with a clinical counterattack. Michael Speed lived up to his name and broke away down the right with some great pace. He delivered an accurate cross to the back-post and Morien guided his header home.
Six minutes later, the hosts had a two-goal lead. This time, Allotment failed to properly clear their lines and defender Scott Lowery slotted the ball into the back of the net from close-range at the back-post. Whitley leading 3-1 at the break.
Allotment manager Jay Bates made two substitutions at half-time in an attempt to get back into the game. Gee Baltazar and Shane Donaghey, who were both returning the the squad, came on for Luke Parkinson and Sam Bryan.
The changes seemed to shift the pattern of the game as Allotment began to look more dangerous. Matty Hayton provided us with a lifeline on 58 minutes as he netted after getting on the end of a Shane Donaghey corner.
3 minutes later, we were back on level-terms as Hayton scored another goal. A driving run from Mikel Thompson put Whitley on the backfoot. Thompson then played in Hayton who calmly finished off the move to make it 3-3.
We continued to press for another goal and Hayton almost completed a hat-trick on 69 minutes. He once again held his run to perfection however, his shot was slid just past the far-post. Hayton again came close in the 75th minute with a very similar opportunity.
With 77 minutes played, the comeback was completed. Thompson played a neat one-two with Bates before firing the ball past Lister from just inside the box to give us the lead for the first time in the game.
With 10 minutes to go, Ryan Higgins replaced Liam Beeston and Higgins almost made an instant impact. Just two minutes after entering the game, Higgins slid a shot towards goal which went agonisingly wide.
With time running out, there was still chances to be had for both teams. Hayton came close once again and hit the woodwork for the second time in the game with just 5 minutes to go with a dipping shot from the edge of the box.
One big chance fell to the Bay in stoppage time as Josh Gilchrist, who was a second-half substitute, took aim from close-range however, his shot went just past the post and out for a goal kick. Allotment managed to hold on for the three points.
Whitley Bay: Lister, Smith, Watson, McFarlane, Yoxall, Lowery, Orrell, Richardson, Morien, Parker, Speed
Used Subs: Gilchrist, Dorward
Unused Subs: Taylor, Dippenaar, Dick
West Allotment: Hodgson, Martins, Parkinson, G. Bates, Scott ©, Errington, Beeston, Forster, Hayton, Thompson, Bryan
Used Subs: Baltazar, Donaghey, Higgins
Unused Subs: Williams
Photos | Graeme Jackson