South Shields were eliminated from the Buildbase FA Trophy by Ashton United on Tuesday.
In an action packed second-half, Ashton’s Sam Baird got the first goal in the 55th minute before Jamie Sterry equalised just 10 minutes later.
Michael Raynes got the winner seven minutes from the end, sending Ashton into the second round of the competition.
This was the third meeting between these sides this season and both teams saw plenty of the ball in the first half, but Shields had more possession and looked the more likely to score. The Mariners’ defence was able to switch play well and direct the ball through the middle.
Shields had the first chances of the game, with Alex Kempster and Jason Gilchrist going close in the opening stages. Ashton goalkeeper Greg Hartley was also called into action early on as he saved a Blair Adams header.
The Mariners had a couple of opportunities in the Ashton half. Jordan Hunter hit a menacing deep cross towards goal but the ball went over the bar, and Blair Adams was causing issues down the left for the Robins, providing attacking opportunities before being able to slot back into defence.
Ashton had a sniff at the Shields goal after switching the ball to the left wing, but a cross from John Pritchard was headed out.
On the cusp of half-time Adams had a decent chance saved after he received the ball from Robert Briggs and cut through the defence, but he was ruled offside.
Ashton came out full of energy in the second half, having a couple of early chances. Former Mariners forward Millenic Alli burst down the wing and his effort was kept out by Myles Boney.
Shields had a couple of plays in the Ashton half but it was the hosts who drew the first blood of the game. A Pritchard free-kick was met by Baird, who volleyed home.
The Mariners continued to attack and used Hunter and Kempster down the wings to try to build play.
They were soon rewarded for their efforts when a cross came in and was stabbed home by Sterry as he registered his first goal for the club.
Both teams began to pick up the pace in search of a winner, the ball pinging between them and both sides having chances.
It was the Robins who got the next goal when Raynes headed in a Pritchard corner in the 83rd minute.
Shields had numerous chances towards the end of the game to try to take it to penalties. Hartley pulled off another good save in the bottom corner to deny substitute Darius Osei in the 86th minute.
Just moments later Ashton managed to clear a dangerous ball into the box and another Osei effort was saved.
In the dying stages of added time, Sterry came agonisingly close to nabbing the equaliser but Ashton were able to block the ball and clear, with strong penalty appeals for a challenge on Dillon Morse waved away as the hosts held on to progress to the next round of the Trophy.
South Shields: Boney, Sterry, Adams, Ross, Morse, Briggs (c), Hunter (Hindle 84), Turnbull, Gilchrist, Lowe (Mason 81), Kempster (Osei 70). Subs not used: Coombe, Shaw, Baxter, Gillies.
Goal: Sterry (66).
South Shields return to action with a trip to Ashton United on Tuesday as they battle for a place in the second round of the Buildbase FA Trophy.
The Mariners have not played since the Emirates FA Cup defeat at Cheltenham Town on November 7th as a result of the national lockdown and subsequent tier restrictions.
Tuesday’s match will take place behind closed doors but a live stream is available to watch for £6, with the profits to be split equally between the two clubs. To purchase the stream, click here and follow the instructions.
This will be the third meeting so far this season between Ashton and Shields.
The first encounter saw the Mariners recover from a two-goal deficit to claim a 3-3 draw in the league, before they eliminated their Lancashire opponents from the Emirates FA Cup with a 4-0 victory.
Shields travel to Hurst Cross hoping to reach the second round of this competition for the first time in the club’s history.
Full updates will be provided on the club’s social media channels during the match.
The pause to the Pitching In Northern Premier League season has been extended until at least December 16th, and will be reviewed on a fortnightly basis.
Clubs across the Isthmian, Northern Premier and Southern Football Leagues voted earlier this week on whether to resume the campaign immediately or continue the pause in fixtures, with 76% of them electing for the latter.
However, Buildbase FA Trophy fixtures will go ahead in the meantime, meaning the Mariners will be back in action on Tuesday when they travel to Ashton United.
As Ashton is in a Tier 3 area, the match will be played behind closed doors. Supporters will be able to purchase a live stream by clicking here.
Further updates will be released when they are available and we look forward to hopefully welcoming you back to 1st Cloud Arena soon.
Below is the statement which was released by the Trident Leagues.