NORTHALLERTON TOWN got off to a winning start in the first division of the Northern League at the weekend, beating Bishop Auckland 1-0.

It had been another roller coaster experience for Town, who lost in midweek in the first game in the FA Cup to Billingham Town FC. The side has lost the services of Jack Proctor and Nicky Martin, who have joined Redcar Athletic, and Neil Pattinson. On the plus side Mathew Crust and Tommy Marron have joined from Guisborough and Brad Plant and Nathan Stephenson have joined from Marske United. Others are expected to arrive to create competition for places. Several players have been awarded contracts which is a progressive step for Town

Away at Bishop, Town were first to attack with Charlie Graham hoisting a ball into the area for Mickey Rae, who was penalised for impeding the 'keeper.

Town's defence dealt competently with a Bishops attack and Tom Marron cleared the ball upfield. Mickey Rae tracked back and won the ball and left an opponent in a heap. Tom Dawson saved well to his right a shot from distance at the expense of a corner. Charlie Graham charged forward in Town's best move of the opening minutes, which saw John Howard, Mickey Rae and Nat Skidmore involved. He was unlucky not to win a corner. Tom Marron did well to quell another attack then Lee Brockbank cleared a ball down the line.

As the half time whistle approached, Town were encamped in the Bishops' penalty area, but could not find the breakthrough until the second period, when, with the wind at their backs, Andrew Shepherd did well to fire the ball across the area to John Howard to score what proved to be the winning goal for Town in the 55th minute.

Final Score: Bishop Auckland 0 Northallerton Town 1


Bishop Auckland: Nick Liversedge, Lee Moore, Mark Dixon, Liam Potter, Kris Summers, Jamie Davis,Jack Connor, Jamie Davis, Jack Connor, Jamie Marshall, Craig Hutchinson, Chris Winn (c) Kyle Morris. Subs; Jack Cooper, McKellan Lines, Liam Goldsborough, Luke Hogan, Regan Nixon.

Northallerton Town: Tom Dawson, Lee Brookbank, Charlie Graham, Jackson Waller, Tom Marron (c) Dan Jones, Andrew Shepherd, Nathaniel Skidmore, Mickey Rae, Nathan Stephenson, John Howard. Subs: Brad Plant, Matthew Crust, David Hillerby, Gary Shaw and Kieron Ezard.

Referee: Chris Armstrong (Darlington)