Evo-Stik Division One North
Harrogate Railway Athletic 1, New Mills 4
AN INCIDENT-PACKED opening day of the season saw New Mills score three second-half goals to secure victory against Harrogate Railway Athletic.
The opening goal came somewhat out of the blue in the 32nd minute when a poor back-pass across his own penalty area by defender Jake Lawlor went straight to Steve Moore who couldn’t quite believe his luck and neatly tucked the ball past the onrushing Jordan Yorath from ten yards.
James Coates was fortunate not to concede an equaliser in the run-up to the interval when he appeared to misjudge a long-distance shot. The keeper could only parry the ball onto the crossbar and the rebound was headed in by Phil Myles, but the assistant referee had his flag raised.
It took 90 seconds of the second half for Harrogate to draw level though. This time Coates was completely faultless as Colin Hunter’s speculative strike took a huge deflection off Chris Young.
Buoyed by the equaliser, The Rail took the game by the scruff of the neck but spurned some decent looking chances.
They were made to pay for their profligacy when the Millers regained the lead midway through the half albeit in slightly strange circumstances. Dave Fitzpatrick’s wicked inswinging corner caused mayhem in the six-yard box and centre-half Michael Bowler was adjudged to have applied the final touch as several players, including goalkeeper Yorath, ended up in the back of the net.
Maybe Yorath felt aggrieved he had not been awarded a free-kick in that incident and his visible frustration seemed to get the best of him minutes later.
This time the keeper dealt with an almost identical Fitzpatrick corner but appeared to strike out in the aftermath at centre half Dave Chadwick who didn’t appear to do a great deal by way of retaliation.
Both players were dismissed for supposed violent conduct.
After a chaotic few minutes, during which Harrogate’s assistant manager Lee Ashforth came on as a replacement keeper, Fitzpatrick cheekily chipped the resulting spot kick straight down the middle as Ashforth dived to his left.
Moore applied the finishing touches with eight minutes remaining. The impressive Fitzpatrick supplied a crossfield ball to the striker and after coming inside the defender, his low angled shot clipped a defender’s ankle en-route to the bottom corner.
New Mills: Coates, Armstrong (Cotton), Fitzpatrick, Bowler, Chadwick, Millen (Headley), Meakin, Young, Ormesher (Needham), Moore, Horrocks. Unused sub: Alford.