Terriers’ Pre-Season Off to Winning Start
By Andrew McDonnell
Summer signings Liam Hudson and Marc Walton both scored brace’s on their debuts as Bedlington Terriers ran out 5-3 winners against Red House Farm at Blakelaw Park.
Hudson’s goals in the opening 22 minutes were cancelled out when the hosts pulled it back level at half-time, before taking the lead two minutes into the second-half through Jay-Jay Aplogan.
Stephen Buzzeo, also on debut, pulled Bedlington back level two minutes later and Walton then bagged two goals in the final half-an-hour to ensure that new manager Andy Ferrell got off to a winning start.
Three players remained from last season’s squad when Ferrell named his starting line-up, but the game was going to be a challenge for the Terriers against a physical side.
The visitors started well, looking to get the ball down and play with a new philosophy under the new management, and they were rewarded in after 13 minutes.
Adam Harvey picked up the ball and pressed forward, and after an intricate through ball to Hudson, the striker neatly slotted the ball into the net.
The former West Allotment Celtic man doubled the lead nine minutes later when he fired across the keeper and in following some great solo play.
Walton could have killed the game off within the first 30 minutes with two chances falling his was, but both were off-target.
It was the turn of former Bedlington man Alex Benjamin to get on the scoresheet when he found the top corner with a header after finding himself in some space in the box.
Red House Farm’s goal came against the run of play, a lapse in concentration led to the striker being allowed space, but the two goal deficit was wiped out two minutes before the interval.
A long ball over the top caught the defenders off-guard and Glenn Lewis made no mistake with the finish.
As expected, the changes then started to come, three substitutions were made at half-time with Fraizer Nairn replacing Dan Staples and trialist’s Tom Skidmore and Kallum McGlen also came on.
The hosts went ahead with just 96 seconds played of the second-half, Kevin Grahamslaw’s shot was pushed into the path of Aplogan, who almost missed the chance after his tap-in ricocheted off the post and in.
Ferrell’s men ensured they weren’t behind for long, debutant Buzzeo fired an extraordinary shot that dipped at the last minute, beating the keeper.
Bedlington then found their feet in the match once again, Lance McGlen, K.McGlen and Buzzeo all having opportunities within a six minute period.
Walton scored his first of the game when he used his strength to allow him to turn and shoot effectively, with the shot going under then keeper and into the bottom corner.
Benjamin may have added a second to his name following an attempted lob and a curling effort which went inches past the far post.
Trialist Jack Graham may well have found himself with a goal to his name, but his shot couldn’t get past the reach of Alex Curran in the Red House Farm goal.
The Terriers did finally manage to get their fifth of the game when Walton headed home Mason Stephenson’s brilliant pin-point cross.
Having won their opening game, the Terriers go onto Saturday’s game away to Ashington Colliers with a little bit of form on their side, and some promising trialist’s hoping to make a statement.
Red House Farm: Curran, Aplogan (Newton-Eddy (Soulsby 63) 25, Lewis 71), Brodgen, Farndell (Brooks 53), Steinmetz, Bailey, Brooks (Lewis (Dunn 46) 42), Garhamslaw (Aplogan 46), Dunn (Benjamin 25), Brown, Soulsby (Phillips 41)
Terriers: Staples (Nairn 46), L.McGlen, Dummett, Liam Davison (Ferrell 53), Pendlebury, Nellis (Skidmore (T) 46), Harvey (K.McGlen (T) 46), Buzzeo (Laviers (T) 69), Walton, Drane (T) (Graham (T) 66), Hudson (Stephenson 51)
Referee: Owen Thoms
Assistants: Ellen Bailey and Martin Docherty