Keeper crisis as Bay lose at home
Whitley Bay 1-4 Bishop Auckland
Whitley ended up well beaten after a disappointing performance when they suffered the rare misfortune of having to use three different goalkeepers.
Tom Flynn was forced to leave the field after 20 minutes with a groin injury and his replacement, Liam Powell limped off before half time, so outfield player Luke Salmon donned the keeper’s gloves for the remainder of the game.
If that was not enough bad luck, Whitley had been forced into a late change when Dan Taggart pulled up during the pre-match warm up and had to replaced in the starting 11 by Stephen Ramsey.
Kyle Fryatt gave the visitors an eighth minute lead when he used his pace to burst clear on the right before clipping the ball beyond Flynn and into the far corner of the net.
Whitley responded with Luke Salmon getting a low shot on target but Liversedge saved at his near post.
The two changes of goalkeeper did little to settle the Whitley nerves, but at half-time they remained firmly in the match at only 0-1 down.
After 55 minutes they managed to draw level at 1-1 when Gillesphey played a ball through and Foalle seized his chance to fire past the keeper from 12 yards.
The goal sparked Whitley into a brief period of attacking play when they put the visitors under more pressure than at any other stage of the game. However, the optimism lasted barely six minutes as just past the hour, a ball played to the back post by Hoganson was tapped home by Ryder to put Bishops back in front.
Salmon then produced a fine save, pushing over a shot from Callum Patton. Whitley were close to snatching a second equaliser a minute later when Foalle’s deep cross reached substitute Olly Martin but his effort was put behind at the back post.
But Bishops virtually sealed the game with a third goal when substitute Andrew Johnson beat Salmon, effectively putting the game beyond Whitley.
Ten minutes later, Patton broke through the Bay defence and seemed set to score but as Salmon advanced off his line, he unselfishly squared the ball to Johnson for a simple tap in to make it 4-1.
In stoppage time Salmon made another good save but the visitors emerged as deserved winners.