Ryhope CW climbed to 11th in Northern League Division One with a 2-0 win over Seaham Red Star on Tuesday night.
Michael Rae and Robbie Bird scored either side of the break to give the hosts the three points, and in truth, it was a comfortable three points.
The hosts started brightly, and David Vincent’s effort in the second minute was crucially deflected for a corner.
With five minutes on the clock, a goalline clearance kept Ryhope at bay. Bird found himself with possession on the byline, and his low ball across goal found Rae. He couldn’t find room to shoot, so he teed up Chris Trewick whose effort was cleared off the line by Liam Gillesphey.
Shortly after, the woodwork denied Ryhope. Jon Weirs beat numerous Seaham defenders to put him in on goal, but his effort clipped the crossbar on its way over.
Still with only 10 minutes played, Ryhope CW went very close once again. Ben Riding picked out Vincent and he helped it onto Rae whose perfectly timed run had him in on goal. His shot had the ‘keeper beaten, but it clipped the post on its way wide.
Seaham were very lucky not to be behind within the opening quarter of an hour, but they then created a couple of their own chances.
David Robinson had an effort blocked in the 15th minute, before the rebound was blasted over.
The game then settled down, with a dangerous Ryhope ball being drilled across the face of goal being the only half chance.
With seven minutes of the first half remaining, Paul Weldon’s free-kick for Seaham forced Jordan Harkess into a fine save to push the ball onto the crossbar. Seaham converted the rebound, but it was ruled out for offside.
And, four minutes later, at the other end, Ryhope broke the deadlock. The ball was worked to Rae who took aim from 20 yards. Chris Bannon, in the Seaham goal, may have been unsighted and the ball found a way under him and into the net.
Despite some early second half pressure from Seaham, they failed to create any clear-cut chances in the opening few minutes. They did have a good chance in the 52nd minute as Daniel Wilson burst through on goal. However, Harkess made himself big and did well to save.
The resulting corner was cleared as far as Matthew Wade for Seaham, but his shot was too high.
In the 57th minute, Ryhope had a chance to double their lead. Weirs’ good work saw him pick out Rae whose initial effort was blocked. He latched onto the rebound, but this time, he shot just wide of the near top corner.
However, with their next chance, they did take the lead. What looked a routine long ball was headed back towards Bannon by a Seaham defender. However, the header lacked power and Rae nipped in to steal possession before Bannon could get there. Rae played the ball square to Bird who slotted into an empty net.
Seaham looked to respond, and substitute Morgan Dart almost halved the deficit when his powerful effort forced a good save from Harkess.
Daniel Cranston and Rae both had further chances fail to find the target for Ryhope, while Scott Young fired wide at the other end.
A few substitutions slowed the game down, and that suited Ryhope.
Seaham were pushing inside the final 10 minutes and they did get a few shots away. But, none of those shots were troublesome for Harkess.
Josh Winthorp, Dart and Tyler Richardson all tried their luck to no avail for the visitors.
In the 89th minute, Ryhope almost wrapped up the points. Weirs and Bird linked up to play the latter in, but his effort skimmed the crossbar on its way over.
It wouldn’t matter though as the points were already secure.
Full-time: Ryhope CW 2-0 Seaham Red Star
Next up for me is possibly Middlesbrough Women vs Sunderland Ladies tomorrow if I’m not at the cricket at Chester-le-Street.
Ryhope CW: Harkess, Walker, Cocks, Trewick, Lay (Proctor, 79′), Riding (c), Bird, Hotchkiss, Rae (Jones, 79′), Vincent (Cranston, 67′), Weirs
Unused subs: Winter, Robson
Seaham Red Star: Bannon, Young, Weldon, Wade (Winthorp, 65′), Myers, Sakellaropoulos (Dart, 59′), Gardiner, Gillesphey, Wilson (Richardson, 75′), Robinson (c), Chilton
Unused subs: Hailes, Steavens