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Stockton Town 1
Sweet (89')
1 Dunston
Pearson (45' pen)

REPORT | Stockton Town 1-1 Dunston UTS

Dunston aimed to bounce back from a disappointing defeat at home to North Ferriby last week, making the short trip to Stockton Town. The hosts headed into the game on the back of three wins in a row, winning by a margin of three goals in each game. Dunston on the other hand, were winless in their last three in all competitions.

Dunston started the game well, dominating possession but just lacking that final killer pass to create a chance. The left-hand side was a strong area for Jon McDonald’s side, as Dale Pearson, Chris McDonald & Richard Coulson all showed their quality. Despite this, Stockton had the best chance of the first half an hour, as Glen Butterworth broke through on goal to go one-on-one with the returning Dan Staples, but the Dunston shot stopper made a big save to send the ball flying out for a throw-in.

It was a half with few real chances, but Dunston still managed to make their domination pay off, as Jordan Lamb was brought down in the penalty area by Adam Nicholson on the stroke of half-time. The mazy winger made himself a few yards of space before driving into the box where Nicholson clumsily made the foul. Dale Pearson stepped up from the spot, having missed his last penalty at Pontefract two weeks ago. But Dunston’s talisman made no mistake, an excellent spot kick, smashed into the left side of Callum Roberts’ goal.

Dunston deservedly led at the break, and almost went 2-0 up early in the second half. Dunston launched a devastating counter attack from a Stockton corner, orchestrated by Jordan Lamb. Lamb drove forward into the box, before laying the ball off for Dale Pearson who had an open goal less than ten yards away from goal. Pearson absolute rocketed the ball towards goal, but somehow hit the crossbar.

Former Dunston striker Michael Fowler came on for the Anchors and began to work his magic up front. He caused Jack Walker a number of problems, but Dan Staples was more than equal to him every time he got a shot away.

With ten minutes to go, things got better for Dunston as Dan McWilliams was shown a straight red card, reducing Stockton down to ten men. The full-back hacked down Richard Coulson on a break away, and the referee didn’t hesitate to send him off.

Dunston could’ve put the game to bed as Dale Pearson broke away on the left hand side, but his eventual shot was just shy of the bottom right corner. And in heartbreaking fashion, Stockton managed to score a late equaliser through Michael Sweet to snatch a point at the death, as a set piece paid off.

Despite losing two points, Dunston regained a place in the play-off places, but it was a disappointing result after a dominating display.

Published Saturday 21st October 2023