Evo-Stik Northern Premier League
Saturday 24 November 2018
Stafford Rangers and Whitby Town shared six goals in an entertaining game at Marston Road. Rangers had Joe Cuff back in the starting line-up after illness ruled him out last week. Missing was Andy Haworth through suspension. The hosts made the perfect start by taking a 2nd minute lead when Tom Thorley chested down Lee bullock’s defensive header and volleyed past Adam McHugh from the edge of the area.
Stafford looked the sharper of the two sides although Whitby were well in the contest and saw Matthew Tymon miss out with two chances that came his way.
Jake Charles forced Whitby keeper Adam McHugh low to his left to prevent Rangers extending the lead while Jack Sherratt was well off target when well placed. In between an unmarked Toby Lees planted a free header straight at Adam Whitehouse.
Whitby then stunned Rangers with two goals in a five-minute spell.
The first came from a Dale Hobson penalty on 35 mins – the award of the spot kick was a soft one after Hobson had gone down easily under Luke Jones’ challenge. The Rangers’ skipper was involved in Whitby’s second when his attempted clearance was charged down by Lewis Maloney who advanced to fire past Whitehouse.
The ding-dong battle continued, and Rangers were back level within a minute. A perfect cross from the right by Theo Bailey-Jones was matched by the run and finish from Cuff.
There was still time for both sides to add to the scoring before the half time whistle but Junior Mondall fired wide for Whitby after he had outwitted both Dan Burns and Jones while Jake Charles’ low centre played pin-ball in the Whitby defence before being blocked on the line by Lees.
The two sides exchanged chances early in the second half. Whitehouse made a good save to deny Adam Gell then a minute later Cuff was only just wide with a shot from near the left touchline.
Cuff sent another shot flashing across the face of the Whitby goal, but it was the visitors who were to strike next. Junior Mondall won possession in the Stafford area and laid off to Callum Patton who hammered past Whitehouse to put his side ahead with 20 mins remaining.
Stafford refused to give up and Cuff fired in his second of the game on 80 mins after Thorley and Izak Reid had linked well.
Rangers piled on the pressure in the final minutes but couldn’t find the important goal that would give them all three points.
Stafford: 1 Adam Whitehouse, 2 Lewis Banks, 3 James Askey, 4 Luke Jones, 5 Jack Sherratt (15 Josh Green 77m), 6 Dan Burns, 7 Theo Bailey-Jones (12 Izak Reid 77m), 8 Tom Thorley, 9 Jake Charles (14 Harry Benns 74m), 10 Andrai Jones, 11 Joe Cuff. Unused Subs: 16 Sam Coulson, 17 Liam Collings
Whitby: 1 Adam McHugh, 2 David McTiernan, 3 Jassem Sukar, 4 Adam Gell, 5 Toby Lees, 6 Lee Bullock, 7 Callum Patton, 8 Dale Hobson, 9 Junior Mondall, 10 Matthew Tymon (15 Greg Rutherford 46m), 11 Lewis Maloney. Unused Subs: 12 Kieran Weledji, 14 Ashley Coffey, 16 Cameron Wilson, 17 Daniel Dixon
Cautions: McTiernan, Maloney (Whitby)
Referee: Stuart Richardson
Report by Chris Elsley