REPORT | Albion Pay The Penalty At Gresley
By Jay Taylor
Two Martin Smyth penalties and a whole host of missed chances condemned Tadcaster Albion to back-to-back league defeats.
Chris Howarth volleyed through the excellent Jack Livesey in injury time but it was merely a consolation for the frustrated Brewers.
Three changes were made from Monday’s lacklustre defeat to Morpeth as Jack Walters, Aiden Savory and Jason Mycoe all earned recalls.
It’s fair to say that the pitch at Moat Park doesn’t allow for the beautiful game to be played in a beautiful way, far from it in fact.
Adaptability is a huge bonus to hold amongst your ranks, especially in non-league football and that’s what Albion have got to get used to, they won’t play on pitches as pristine as their own very often.
The home fans were encouraged early on as Martin Smyth sent a looping header narrowly over Michael Ingham’s goal.
Nevertheless the one big chance in the first half came at the other end on 16 minutes. Pete Davidson set Joe Lumsden in on goal down the right-hand side but his cross/shot couldn’t be turned in by Casey Stewart.
Taddy were enjoying the majority of the territory as the first half ticked by but weren’t troubling Jack Livesey in the Gresley goal.
However it was the hosts who went into the break ahead as Martin Smyth converged a penalty kick on 42 minutes. Billy Whitehouse was adjudged to have controlled a cross with his arm and after a huge appeal from the home fans, referee Mr Dawson pointed to the spot.
That man Smyth almost heaped further pain on Albion before the first half drew to a close but his poked effort whistled just wide of the top corner.
Tadcaster needed to respond in the second half and they did, flying out of the blocks, without scoring though.
Corey Roper brilliantly kept the pressure on from a free-kick and drilled dangerously across the goal-line crying out for someone to tap in but three yellow shirts watched on from further afield in the penalty area.
Having said that, the best and clearest chance of the day by a mile fell to Billy Whitehouse five minutes into the second half. Joe Lumsden cleverly skipped inside Kane Jellyman in the box and pulled back to Whitehouse who blazed over left-footed from seven yards.
Three minutes later and the Brewers, no not Gresley’s local side Burton Albion, were in behind again but the unpredictable pitch didn’t help Joe Lumsden’s attempts.
It was one-way traffic as Gresley were finally being put to the sword. The woodwork was next to get in the way as colossal central defender Harry Coates saw his looping header flick off the top of the crossbar.
Coates was causing problems on set-pieces as he came even closer to his first Tadcaster goal half-way through the second half. The former Hyde man rose highest on a corner and powered a header to which looked destined for the top corner only for young Livesey to pull off a stunning save.
The attacking alteration at the break by Collins & Morton was certainly having the desired affect, the only thing missing was a goal of course. However this does of course leave the door slightly more ajar at the other end as Smyth saw his effort cleared off the line by Aaron Hardy.
As the second 45 dwindled away, Albion continued to throw everything at their opponents but again, the goalkeeper on-loan from Burton Albion came out trumps keeping out Lumsden from eight yards.
The effort and commitment of Taddy couldn’t be faulted though as again, with seven minutes left, Lumsden found himself in space in the penalty area only for Livesey to get in the way once more.
The eventual game winner also came from the spot as Gresley were awarded a second penalty five minutes from time after a sharp counter-attack led to Corey Roper mistiming a last ditch challenge.
Martin Smyth stepped up again and confidently swept into the back of the net to double Gresley’s lead.
Substitute Chris Howarth did pull a goal back deep into stoppage time when volleying through the hands of Livesey but it was just too late.
Full-Time: Gresley 2-1 Tadcaster Albion
Gresley: Livesey, Branch, Harrison, Barrett©️, Jellyman, Morris-Clarke, Lansdowne, Graves, Smyth, O’Connell, Lee
Subs: Steadman, Morgan, Steele, Evans, Slater
Tadcaster: Ingham©️, Whitehouse, Walters (Hardy 23), Mycoe, Coates (Barkworth 76), Barrett, Stewart, Roper, Lumsden, Davidson, Savory (Howarth 77)