I had a few options for a game tonight, but I was always going to pick this one. It was the night of the Northumberland Senior Cup final at St James’ Park where Morpeth Town played North Shields. I’ve never actually been to a game in the Northumberland Senior Cup never mind the final. I normally consider St James’ Park to be out of my range for a midweek game. Sunderland vs Burton Albion was one possible game, but I would have only gone there if I had a free (or very cheap) ticket. The reverse game of this fixture earlier in the season was quite one-sided, and I expected it to a much closer affair tonight.
Sunderland RCA narrowly beat Seaham
Sunderland RCA claimed a narrow 2-1 win against Seaham Red Star at Meadow Park on Tuesday night.
Kyle Davis’ 16th minute penalty put Sunderland RCA ahead, but Lee Kerr’s superb strike nine minutes later pulled Seaham level.
RCA’s winner came through Nathan O’Neill in the 66th minute.
In a quiet start, Seaham had a couple of early corners, but RCA dealt with them comfortably.
The first shot didn’t come until the 11th minute. A low Sunderland RCA ball picked out Colin Larkin who laid the ball off to Dylan Elliott. He took aim from 20 yards, and his effort wasn’t too far away.
With quarter of an hour on the clock, RCA were awarded a penalty. A high foot on Greg Swansbury was the cause, and Davis took responsibility. He blasted a confident high effort into the net giving Chris Bannon no chance.
As the hosts went in search of a second, a superb crossfield ball picked out Tom McAloon in the 22nd minute. He cut in to beat his man, but a crucial block prevented the former Middlesbrough youngster.
Davis then had a header saved, before Seaham pulled level with a superb goal in the 25th minute. The ball fell kindly to Kerr 30 yards from goal, and he drilled a superb half volley into the top corner giving Anthony Patterson no chance.
Having pulled his side level, Kerr was fancying his chances of a second. He had another powerful effort crucially blocked in the 31st minute, before another Kerr effort darted just wide a minute later.
In the 34th minute, Sunderland RCA almost regained their lead. A low cross somehow found its way to Davis at the back post, and his drilled effort just say evaded the far bottom corner.
Kerr than had yet another effort go wide, before a superb save from Bannon prevented RCA’s Ross Preston from point blank range.
Anth Myers then went close for Seaham. His towering header clipped the bar on its way over, and the visitors were adamant that Patterson got a touch and it should have been a corner.
Following the break, a drilled RCA cross picked out Dom Moan just inside the penalty area. He tried his luck with a first time volley. It would have been a spectacular goal, but he didn’t fully connect, and it sailed wide.
David Robinson then fired wide at the other end, before Dan Wilson was denied by a crucial block.
Following a quiet spell, Elliott drilled well over from long-range for the home side.
In the 66th minute, Sunderland RCA regained their lead. A defensive error gifted the hosts possession and the ball was worked into O’Neill whose poked effort regained their lead.
With 17 minutes to play, a superb Sam Lilley ball for the hosts gave them an opportunity to double their lead, but good defending eventually kept them at bay.
Elliott and O’Neill both failed to find the target for RCA as time wore on.
Inside the final 10 minutes, Seaham seemed to be playing a rather unconventional 5-1-4 system.
They were going in search of an equaliser, but a resolute RCA defence was holding firm.
In a rather desperate attempt, Liam Gillesphey fired well wide almost 40 yards for Red Star.
Despite pushing forward, they couldn’t create anything else and RCA took the points.
Full-time: Sunderland RCA 2-1 Seaham Red Star
Next up for me is Horden CW vs Darlington RA tomorrow.
Sunderland RCA: Patterson, Lilley, Lavery, Preston, Swansbury (c), Page, Davis, Elliott, Larkin (Moan, 28′), O’Neill (Croft, 86′), McAloon (Callen, 72′)
Unused subs: Charlton, Davison
Seaham Red Star: Bannon, Young, Joe Hailes (Daniel Hailes, 79′), Gardiner, Myers, Gillesphey, Taylor, Kerr (Greenwood, 79′), Wilson, Robinson (c), Chilton
Unused subs: Henderson, Clarke, Wilkinson
Admission: £6 adults, £4 concessions
Hot dog, can of Coke and Mars Bar: £3.10
Referee: Helen Conley