By Martin Walker
Newton Aycliffe comfortably overpowered lower-league opposition in their third pre-season friendly of the summer at Moore Lane Park tonight.
New striker Gavin Barton grabbed two goals as Allan Oliver’s side, beaten 6-1 at home to a young Sunderland side last Friday night, beat Northern Alliance League outfit Percy Main Amateurs.
Aycliffe hardly got out of second gear as they dictated a lot of the play during what was a typical friendly, with a raft of second-half changes unsettling things.
But Barton’s brace would have pleased Newtonians boss Allan Oliver most, with the big forward opening the scoring in the 14th minute with a powerful header.
The visitors conceded a free-kick about 40 yards out, and Barton met Stuart Owen’s nicely-floated set-piece to head into an empty net after beating Percy Main’s flapping ‘keeper to the ball.
Aycliffe doubled their hold on the game with a fortuitous but well-worked goal. Skipper Sean Tarling played a cracking ball into the right channel for Paul Broom to run on to, and the flying winger took a great touch before his cross was deflected over the stranded Percy Main keeper and in-off the far post.
Paul Robinson engineered Aycliffe’s third goal of the evening seven minutes into the second-half when his deft ball in behind the back line found Kris Hughes perfectly, and he slotted home.
Barton got his second goal of the night five minutes from the end to complete the scoring after he brilliantly controlled Broom’s smart throughball before coolly side-footing past the visiting ‘keeper.
Aycliffe’s pre-season preparations continue with a trip to Richmond Town on Saturday, followed by Gateshead Leam Rangers (away) next Wednesday and a home friendly against Conference North side Harrogate Town a week on Friday (3rd August, 7.30pm).
Team: Pocklington, Hinchley, Owen, Close, Peck, Broom, Tarling, Knox, P Robinson, Barton, Hughes. Subs (used): Campbell, Woodhouse, Wilson, D Robinson, McMullen, Black.
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