Garstang 2 Sunderland RCA 6: Riversiders’ FA Vase run ends with heavy defeat

Tom Entwistle scored both of Garstang's goals at the weekend
Tom Entwistle scored both of Garstang's goals at the weekend

Garstang’s FA Vase adventure came to an end at The Riverside as they lost 6-2 against Sunderland RCA.

After withstanding early pressure Garstang started to settle into the game but, in a 16-minute spell, they lost the aerial battles in the box against some very tall players.

On each occasion, the ball fell kindly for a Sunderland player to tap in, and before they knew it, the hosts were 4-0 down.

Nathan O’Neill found the net twice with Luke Page and Greg Swansbury also scoring.

The second half began with Garstang throwing caution to the wind with Shaun Sailor and Billy McKenna attacking down the flanks, while Tom Graham and Tom Entwistle took control of the midfield, spraying the ball out to bring Phil Nagy and Dan Birch into attacking areas.

This paid off on 55 minutes when McKenna burst into the box and was brought down from behind as he pulled the trigger.

It was a certain penalty but there was no card of any colour for the offender as Entwistle stepped up, sent the keeper the wrong way and reduced the deficit.

A few minutes later, McKenna dispossessed the keeper as he tried to shepherd the ball out for a goal kick.

As he went around the keeper, he was hauled down just outside the area and was shown a yellow card.

Entwistle then made it 4-2 on 64 minutes when he weaved his way into the area and planted a left-footed shot into the net.

Sunderland were wobbling at this point and ran down the clock down at every opportunity before the game ended as a contest in the 83rd minute.

Garstang keeper Will Kitchen tried to keep the ball alive but was caught in possession.

Then, in almost identical circumstances to the Sunderland keeper earlier, he brought down the striker just inside the box.

The referee pointed to the spot and, in contrast to his earlier decision at the other end, gave Kitchen a red card.

Ric Coar went in goal but could not keep out Colin Larkin’s penalty before the visitors rubbed salt in the wound with two minutes left when O’Neill completed his hat-trick.

Garstang are back in action on Wednesday when they entertain Atherton Collieries in the Lancashire Challenge Cup (7.45pm).