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Kirkbymoorside aim to rise after confidence-boosting victory
2:58pm Wednesday 3rd October 2012 in Sport
Kirkbymoorside continued their recent upturn in form with a 2-1 win over Sunderland West End, who would have moved into the top six had they won.
Kirkby have games to come over the next few weeks against some of the lesser lights of the Wearside League and it is hoped they can pick up more points and move towards the top half of the table.
Saturday’s game saw a debut for experienced goalkeeper Mark Tansey, who has recently signed on after recovering from a wrist injury.
The first half was dominated by defences. Kirkby played their familiar passing game, while the visitors mixed it up and were not afraid to use the long ball but Kirkby centre-backs Karl Richardson and Matty Bower were equal to the challenge.
West End’s Steven Bogie had a goal disallowed for off-side, while Callum Hodgson shot from outside the box straight at Tansey, before Kirkby enjoyed a good spell in which Jordan Rivis and Sarjo Cham both had attempts off-target.
As the first half drew to a close, Tansey cut out a dangerous cross from the left and then made a good diving save as Michael McCabe tried his luck from 20 yards.
The second half started off where the first had finished and Brad Thompson fired wide from 25 yards for West End before the deadlock was broken after 55 minutes.
Good work down Kirkby’s right by Rivis and Johnny Brown ended with Brown playing a great ball across the box for the advancing Tom Ellis to score.
For West End, Bogie saw a free-kick well blocked by Chris Rhodes, John Coomber fired over from 25 yards and Thompson was narrowly wide with a low drive from just outside the area.
Brown fired just wide as the Moorsiders had their own opportunities before Thompson fired over from 25 yards at the other end.
Kirkby doubled their lead after 77 minutes when Jonathon Birbeck picked up the loose ball after his free-kick into the box was cleared and fired a shot from outside the box which struck the bar and rebounded towards the penalty spot. Brown reacted the quickest and steered the ball home.
Sunderland were given hope of snatching something from the game with a bizarre goal four minutes from time – Coomber’s high cross curled on the breeze and Tansey and Michael Wharton challenged for it, with both players and the ball ending up in the net. No free-kick was given, with the officials saying the ball had already crossed the line before contact was made.
In the end it did not matter as Kirkby held on to pick up a useful three points.