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Quakers smash 50-goal barrier with Ash rout
4:10pm Wednesday 24th October 2012 in Football
Darlington opened up a nine-point lead at the top of the Northern League with a comprehensive 6-1 win over Ashington.
Quakers took their goal tally for the season to 53, in October, after only 15 games.
With second-placed Spennymoor Town in FA Vase action – winning handsomely at Bridlington – Quakers took advantage.
They did so with their ninth home win from as many home games against a side that are fancied to do well this season.
Ashington, who finished fifth last season, were eighth before the game and recently lost only narrowly to Spennymoor when they became the first time score past the Moors, but they were no match for Martin Gray’s side.
The tone was set from kickoff with Darlington immediately bulldozing their way through the visitors’ defence.
David Dowson was off target after only 21 seconds and there were numerous other chances, but Middleton’s men took a shock lead, Andrew Johnson heading home at the far post when meeting an Andrew Dugdale cross.
It proved to matter little though, but within five minutes Darlington were in front.
Leon Scott grabbed his now customary goal – having scored in five of his past six games – when he took advantage of Ashington keeper Karl Dryden parrying a David Dowson cross and then Stephen Thompson drilled home from 18 yards.
Gray’s men were thankful, however, for Jack Norton making a fine save to deny stop Johnson’s shot on the turn after he had evaded Stephen Harrison just before the break.
Dowson was back in the side after six games out with a groin strain, but it was not his day despite a handful of efforts.
He did do some damage, however, as one wayward effort sailed over the stand and smashed a car windscreen in the Heritage Park car park.
Darlington smashed through the 50-goal barrier in the second half, Thompson soon making it 3-1 with a penalty after tricky winger Adam Nicholls was fouled by James Taylor and Nicholls was also involved in Quakers’ fourth goal.
His cross was headed goalwards by Gary Brown and parried by Dryden to Amar Purewal to head home at close-range and another header from a yard made it 5-1.
Scott scored after a shot by substitute Shaun Reay was diverted and arched high into the air until dropping at the far post for Quakers’ goalscoring midfielder.
Ashington made a fight of it, though, and Lewis Storie drew warm applause after a vicious volley that brushed the top of Norton’s net, but Quakers had the final word when Chris Emms ran at goal before rolling the ball beyond Dryden.