Penrith 2 – 3 Guisborough Town
|Ebac Northern League Division 1
KO KO 13 51 57 67 69 70 74 75 80 FT
Guisborough Town withstood a late unexpected Penrith rally on Saturday to claim a deserved victory which avenged a 2-1 home league defeat by the Cumbrian side back in November last year.
The impressive Priorymen had cruised into a 3-0 lead before the hour mark with excellently-worked goals from James Dillon (13th minute), Ben Jackson (51st) and Cole Kiernan (57th).
But then a Penrith side languishing second from bottom in the table gave Guisborough a bit of a late fright with goals from Luke Brown (76th) and Gregory McCaragher (80th) set up an unlikely nervy finish for the Priorymen.
A resolute Guisborough, however, stood firm and in the final 10 minutes never really looked like allowing what would have been an amazing Penrith comeback.
Guisborough were cheered on by a healthy contingent of keen KGV supporters who helped swell the crowd to 130 on a bright but very breezy afternoon.
After the game a delighted Guisborough Manager Steve Bell commented: “This was a good performance from the lads. We controlled most of the game and looked comfortable as we built up a commanding lead with 57 minutes on the clock.
“Myself and my Assistant Manager Paul Crager then took what we thought was a calculated risk by taking off three players who we thought needed looking after for some tough games coming up and we suffered a little.
“Penrith got two late goals and although I wouldn’t go as far as to say that we hung on but it was definitely a bit nervy for us towards the end.
“Overall it was a good, well-earned three points so roll on next week…” added Steve.
Guisborough took the lead after just 13 minutes when they forced a corner down the right and a great ball into the middle was met firmly by the head of defender James Dillon, showing he can be as dominant in the air up front as he consistently is at the back.
Guisborough looked mean and hungry and four minutes later midfielder Shabs Mohammed unleashed a bullet of a shot from 25 yards out and it arrowed towards the far left corner of the net but unfortunately kept rising and just cleared the Penrith bar.
It would have been a spectacular contender for goal of the season had the ball stayed a foot lower.
In the 18th minute the Priorymen almost doubled their lead when left back James Risbrough put over a great cross to the back post where striker Sam Webster’s effort was saved on the line by the legs of Penrith ‘keeper Arran Taylor.
Guisborough continued to make all the running with Cole Kiernan prominent up front but then four minutes from half-time a brilliant tackled by James Dillon thwarted a Penrith breakaway attack to ensure his earlier goal remained the difference between the two sides at the break.
In the 51st minute Guisborough doubled their lead to 2-0 with a lovely move down the left by James Risbrough who slid the ball into the Penrith penalty area which in turn was helped on by the lively Louis Johnson and winger Ben Jackson was handily placed to finish off the move smartly.
Then just six minutes later the Priorymen stormed into a 3-0 lead with the move of the match involving some terrific link up play between three Guisborough players.
The tricky ball magician Ben Jackson won the ball deep into Penrith territory and hit a lovely lofted pass into the path of Louis Johnson who squared the ball neatly to the unmarked Cole Kiernan who swept the ball home into the unprotected Penrith goal.
It was a move of real quality and demonstrated just what this ever-improving Guisborough side is capable of.
Despite conceding the two late Penrith goals Guisborough never really looked in danger of losing their hard-won lead and the Priorymen almost took their goals tally to four late on.
Left back James Risborough put the after-burners on and streaked down the left wing and cut inside but his goal-bound shot was luckily blocked on the line by Penrith defender Aiden Howarth. That was a shame as it would have rounded off another excellent performance from Risbrough.
The victory should put Guisborough in good heart for next Wednesday, 9 March when Penrith make the long trip eastwards on the A66 to play the Priorymen in the second round of the Northern League Division One Cup (KO 7.45pm).
Report: Bill Perfitt
|The Frenchfield Stadium
|Penrith, Cumbria CA11 8UA