Blues’ pre-season campaign back on track

WHITBY Town got their pre-season campaign back on track when they made the short trip down the east coast to face Bridlington on Tuesday night.

Although the hosts enjoyed good spells of possession, they lacked the guile to open up Whitby’s solid defence, well marshalled by Kevin Burgess.

A crisp strike by Blues midfielder David McTiernan separated the two teams, in a game which saw decent football but few clear-cut chances.

Whitby had the evening’s first effort but a drilled shot by former Middlesbrough and Cardiff City striker Andy Campbell was safely gathered by Mark Wilberforce.

At the other end, teenage keeper Matthew Calvert was at full stretch as Craig Hogg tried to nod the ball over him, but defences were on top for the opening 20 minutes.

As the half progressed, it was Whitby who created the better opportunities. Rob McDermid might have found more joy if he had been confident enough to use his left foot, but instead his right foot effort was straight at Wilberforce.

McTiernan then cleared the wall with a 30-yard free-kick but again Brid’s keeper was not unduly troubled.

Good defending by Burgess twice stopped Hogg from geting a shot away, and it was not until 31 minutes that the hosts had their first shot on target, although it was a tame, long-range effort from the returning Ash Allanson.

Whitby looked the more likely to score as half-time approached and two right wing crosses from the lively Callum Martin nearly brought about an opening goal.

McTiernan was a whisker away from connecting the first, while McDermid headed the second over from inside the six-yard box.

But on 44 minutes the visitors broke the deadlock. Wayne Aziz misjudged the bounce and Campbell’s lay-off was thumped into the bottom corner by McTiernan from the edge of the area.

Bridlington made wholesale changes at half-time, with newcomer Paul Fraser making his debut in goal and Gareth Owen, Carl Cook, Ged Dalton and Danny Brunton introduced.

Breaking down the Whitby defence still proved difficult though, with Dalton’s curled shot and Josh Greening’s volley the only efforts of note.

One was easily the saved, the other flew over the bar.

Several players were brought back on as Cook looked to find the craft to create an equaliser and Whitby made changes of their own as the game fizzled out somewhat.

It looked more likely to become 2-0 than 1-1, and the away side could have put the game to bed after good link-up play between substitutes Jake Faichney and Andy Leeson, but Tom Lee made a vital interception.

Newcomer Fraser proved his worth when he denied Faichney with his feet and Danny Brunton saved Brid when he made a goal-line clearance from the corner.

Whitby: Calvert, Lyth, White (Blackford), Hassan, Burgess, Williams (Ellison), Martin, McTiernan (Hodgson), McDermid (Leeson), A Campbell (Faichney), Robinson (c). Attendance 168.