Frustrating cup exit as Shields pay the penalty

Robert Briggs lets fly for South Shields at Billingham Synthonia. Picture by Peter Talbot
Robert Briggs lets fly for South Shields at Billingham Synthonia. Picture by Peter Talbot

South Shields suffered a night of frustration as they exited the Ernest Armstrong Memorial Cup last night at Billingham Synthonia.

The Mariners dominated the game, but were unable to make the most of their chances as they were defeated 2-1.

Shields hit the woodwork three times, and had a number of other efforts saved and blocked on the line.

However, they conceded two penalties at the other end, and John Grey’s goal for the Mariners proved to be too late.

Shields started the quarter-final superbly, and Wayne Phillips had a shot cleared off the line within two minutes.

Julio Arca put Martyn Coleman through soon after, but he hit a half-volley wide, while Daryll Hall and Robert Briggs were denied before the hosts were given a penalty for a foul by Ibby Hassan.

Sam Garvie – who scored the winner against Shields for Synthonia in last month’s league game – stepped up and sent Scott Pocklington the wrong way from the spot.

On 15 minutes, a free-kick from Briggs hit the inside of the post before bouncing to safety, while Coleman was denied by a superb save by home goalkeeper Barry Poskett.

David Foley and Briggs also had efforts saved before the hosts broke and were awarded another penalty, despite the challenge appearing to take place outside the box.

Again, Garvie slotted home.

Before and after the break, Coleman in particular continued to be frustrated, while Hassan headed not far over, Michael Turner had an effort cleared off the line and substitute Lewis Teasdale saw a long-range effort brilliantly saved.

Foley touched wide from in front of goal before hitting the crossbar from 30 yards as it looked set to be one of those nights for Shields.

With five minutes left, Leepaul Scroggins hit the post, but soon after, the Mariners pulled a goal back when Grey hit home a pass by Coleman.

Shields continued to pile on the pressure, with Grey and Mechack Kanda both having efforts blocked and then Coleman was denied from point blank range by Poskett.

Teasdale, Briggs and Coleman also missed chances in stoppage time as Shields somehow exited the competition as they failed to make the most of their chances.

They are back in league action on Saturday, with Chester-le-Street Town the visitors to Mariners Park.

SOUTH SHIELDS: Pocklington, Smith, Turner, Hall (Grey 69), Hassan, Arca (Kanda 77), Foley, Scroggins (c), Coleman, Briggs, Phillips (Teasdale 54). Subs not used: Young. Goal: Grey (86).