Glossop North End 1Runcorn Town 2
RUNCORN Town progressed through to the last 32 of the FA Vase for the second successive year after a 2-1 victory at 2009 finalists Glossop North End.
James McShane marked his return to the side after three weeks out with the winning goal in the 69th minute to cap a fine comeback from Town after Glossop had led from Jay Gorton’s 15th minute opener.
The home side, who went close early on from Darren Hamilton’s 25-yard effort, took the lead when a corner from the left was flicked on to Gorton who stabbed the ball home.
Two minutes after the goal, Alex Elliott almost doubled the lead after Darren Kinsey’s slip let him in.
Fortunately for Town, Karl Wills pulled off a fine save.
The hosts looked comfortable on the ball but struggled to create any clear-cut chances.
Indeed, the best efforts came from Town on rare forays up field.
Jason Carey twice went close. He first had a shot cleared off line after keeper Ashley Frith spilled a back header straight to him. He then nipped between the last defender and Frith but saw his shot go wide.
The second-half started with Hamilton cutting in from the left and forcing Wills into a save low down to his right. Town manager Simon Burton rang the chances with Ryan Malone and McShane replacing Mark McGrath and Tony Wynne, and the substitutions paid off after 64 minutes with Town’s equaliser.
Malone set off on a run down the right with his low cross cut. Up stepped Scott Burton who unleashed a thunderous 25-yard drive into bottom corner that gave Frith no chance.
The goal stunned the majority of the 332 crowd inside Surrey Street, and it got worse for them six minutes later with McShane putting Town ahead. Warren Bellew threaded a fine ball through. McShane got to it just before Frith, and knocked it past him to score his 20th goal of the season.
Town were a different team with confident passing, resolute defending and clever midfield play keeping the hosts at arm’s length.
With six minutes remaining, a nice flowing move by Glossop found Sam Hind in the box. Wills, though, pulled off a fine save to turn the ball behind for an unproductive corner.
As time ran down Connor Anderson, who replaced Carey as an 74th minute substitute, should have made it 3-1 when he found himself one-on-one with the keeper, but he pulled his effort wide of the left hand post.
McShane also went close when Bellew played it towards the corner flag for Anderson who put in a first time cross with the goalscorer’s shot blocked for a corner.
Glossop pushed everyone forward for two free-kicks in stoppage time which came to nothing.
Manager Simon Burton was full of praise for his side.
He said: “It’s been a great day for all involved with Runcorn Town. It was always going to be a big ask going to Glossop and winning again but I felt that we had enough in the side to get the right result.
“We started the game brightly but the goal set us back and caused a little bit of panic but we got to half-time without any major scares.
“At half-time we discussed what was expected of individuals and that if we played as a unit that we could turn it round. During the second-half we were the better side and should really have seen the game out more comfortably than the scoreline suggests.
“You always expect teams to create chances but I thought the back five defended well and we were a constant threat going forward. We worked hard for 90 minutes and the lads fully deserved to win the game.
“Myself and (assistant manager) Danny Salt are over the moon to be in the hat for the next round. It’s a fantastic achievement to make it to the same stage of the competition as we did last year and it would be nice to go further this time around.”
THE draw for the fourth round of the FA Vase was made on Monday.
And Town will be on their travels again on January 21 when they visit Billingham Synthonia. They are lying mid-table in the STL Northern Football League Division One.
Glossop North End: Ashley Frith, Lee McGregor, Nicholas Allen, Jamie Dickinson, Kelvin Lugsden, Jay Gorton, Steven Heaon, Adam Oakes, Sam Hind, Darren Hamilton, Alex Elliott 11.Subs: Jack Deakin, Sam Marshall.
Runcorn Town: Karl Wills, Ste Latham, Darren Kinsey, Mark McGrath, Danny Dalton, Tom Spearitt, Tony Wynne, Scott Burton, Jason Carey, Mark Keddie, Warren Bellew. Subs: James McShane, Ryan Malone, Connor Anderson.