Boldon CA 2-2 South Shields: Sam Bartram Memorial Cup shared
The Sam Bartram Memorial Cup was shared as Boldon CA and South Shields played out a hard-fought 2-2 draw on Thursday.
The Mariners twice took the lead in the first half but were twice pegged back by their Wearside League opponents, with the draw a fair result in the end.
The game saw Matty Pattison make his first appearance in a Shields shirt, having been on holiday while the first pre-season friendly, against Gateshead, was played.
He was one of the Mariners’ brightest sparks in the first half, and showed signs of the quality he undoubtedly possesses.
One of his strengths is corner taking, and a number of the South African’s set plays caused Boldon problems.
An early one saw a header by a trialist take a deflection and loop in the air before striking the crossbar.
Both teams had half-chances before Shields took the lead in the 32nd minute.
Jon Shaw brought the ball forward before chipping it beyond the defence for Pattison, whose pass across the box was finished by Michael Richardson.
Boldon were very quickly back on level terms, though, after Adam Bell converted a penalty following a foul in the box.
This was undoubtedly the best spell of the game, and Shields responded immediately.
A cross-field pass was diverted across the box by Richardson, and Carl Finnigan was on hand to tap into an empty net and restore the Mariners’ advantage.
They were unable to carry that into half-time as Boldon equalised for a second time.
A cross from the left by Kris Goss hung in the air, and with Shields claiming for offside, the ball nestled in the bottom corner.
Shields made nine changes at half-time, and the second half was a more disjointed affair.
A youthful Mariners line-up tried to break down their opponents, but Boldon stood firm and held out for a draw.
They could even have snatched a win themselves, but Goss and Shaun Graham were both off target with efforts from distance.
Luke Sullivan made his first Shields appearance in the second half, and the striker headed wide from a left-wing cross in one of their better opportunities after half-time.
A trialist was also denied by a decent stop from home goalkeeper Andy Hunter, while Sullivan fired over from distance after an impressive turn.
The Mariners host FC United of Manchester on Saturday as they look to register their first win of pre-season.
SOUTH SHIELDS: Trialist, Trialist, Callaghan, Trialist, Storey, Shaw (c), Smith, Pattison, Blinco, Richardson, Finnigan.
SOUTH SHIELDS (second half): Trialist, Baxter, Lough, Trialist, Storey, Morse, Trialist, Trialist, Sullivan, Trialist, Trialist.
Goals: Richardson (32), Finnigan (38).
WORDS: Daniel Prince. IMAGE: Peter Talbot.