03 Oct 2019 in Match Reports
Albion pulled off the Northern League shock of the season with a surprise League Cup 2-0 win over unbeaten Stockton Town
A fantastic all round battling performance with keeper Josh Graham and debutant Mitchell Ramsey in particular catching the eye. Liam Barker and Dan Blewitt were the men on target for Albion
Tony Fawcett handed a debut to striker Mitchell Ramsey & chose many of his established 'league cup side' as Albion faced the daunting task of having to beat unbeaten first division Stockton Town to have any chance of progressing to the last 16 from Group C. Indeed The Anchors' only defeat of any sort this season came against National League North opposition, Guiseley, who play three levels higher, so the enormity of the task for a side struggling at home was clear to see.
Not surprisingly it was the Teessiders who took the game to Ryton early on & the hosts were lucky not to be behind on 11 minutes when James Ward fired in a low cross which Cieran Jackson ought to have buried from close range, but Albion keeper Josh Graham managed to block the shot, the ball falling to Michael Roberts whose effort was deflected wide. Despite playing second fiddle to their opponents, it took until the 31st minute for the next scare in the Albion goalmouth. This time Peter Bulmer's header was tipped onto the bar by Graham, the ball bouncing towards Roberts, & he flung himself forward but his diving header was cleared off the line by Joe Shepherd. Ryton knew they had to make what few chances they created count, & this they did on 34 minutes when from a corner, Liam Barker rose the highest to nod past Lee Callum Roberts to nab his first goal of the season. Stockton had a half chance to level on 44 minutes when a fine team move ended with Cameron Wilson screwing his shot wide from the edge of the box, & Albion took an unexpected lead into the interval.
HT RACA 1 STOCKTON TOWN 0
The second half was a comparatively more even contest but it was Stockton who threatened first with a Roberts shot that wasn't too far off the mark. At the other end of the park, Ramsey's relentless energy & speed was giving Town cause for concern & the debutant brought a save out of Roberts on 65 minutes after spinning on the spot and shaking off his marker. The Anchors then went on the offensive with Kevin Hayes, Wilson and Fred Woodhouse efforts all thwarted by Graham in quick succession before Bulmer tested the Ryton stopper again on 82 minutes. With Stockton knocking on the door for an equaliser, a quick breakaway saw Ramsey play the ball to Dan Blewitt, recently on as a substitute & he made no mistake in slotting past Roberts to make it 2-0 and grab his first goal for the club. This looked to take the wind out of the visitors' sails, & Albion's defence were comfortable in seeing the last few minutes out for an unlikely but superb victory.
FT RACA 2 STOCKTON TOWN 0
REFEREE- ADAM NICHOL
RACA- J Graham, Below, Dobson, (Blewitt 76), Shepherd, Turnbull, Barker, Dick (R Graham 49), Cooper, Ramsey, Davis, Dunn. Unused Subs- Ord, Norris, Thompson
REACTION (RACAtv) & HIGHLIGHTS (Anchors TV) BELOW