Whitby Wanderers were narrowly eliminated from the Kenward Cup on Sunday – but still earned plaudits from their opponents’ manager.
Wanderers were narrowly beaten by First Division West Pier in the only game to survive the wet weather on Sunday morning.
But Pier boss Paddy Parke paid tribute to the Whitby side after a cup tie that ebbed and flowed.
“Full credit to Whitby, they played well and made life difficult for us,” he said.
“I said to their manager after the game if they keep playing like that they won’t be far from promotion and would do okay in division one too.
“Having said that, we were scrappy and also made things difficult for ourselves.
“It was a proper cup tie and both sides put a lot into it. We just edged it though and deserved to win the game.”
Wanderers’ supremo Mark Jackson echoed his sentiments.
Jacksonsaid: “Both sides played well but they retained the ball better and took their chances.
“It’s not often us Whitby teams get praise from Scarborough sides, so it was nice to hear positive comments from their manager after the game.
“I was proud of the performance from the lads.” he added.
“We were missing our top scorer Jericho Keys and had a bare 11, so credit has to go to the lads who stepped in.”
The home side took the lead after 15 minutes when Wanderers’ Shaun Hopper handled in the area from Paul Provins’ cross and Martin Cooper swept in the resulting penalty.
Wanderers grabbed a deserved leveller shortly after when a long ball was flicked-on by Jimmy Landers and Simon Taylor latched onto it and smashed into the top corner on the half-volley.
The away side would have led 3-1 at the interval if it wasn’t for Pier goalkeeper Jonny Hyde, who made outstanding saves from both Jack Wilson and Jimmy Organ-Simpson.
Parke made a tactical switch at the break, opting for a 4-3-3 formation for the second half, and that move paid off when they regained the lead.
A ball over the top from Daz Crawford wasn’t defended properly and Hopper’s challenge saw the ball trickle past his own keeper Dave Fish and into his own net for 2-1.
Wanderers weren’t behind for long and again levelled matters up after Taylor was dragged back in the box and Wilson swept the penalty into the bottom corner with Hyde rooted to the spot.
Pier weren’t to be denied their spot in the next round however and Dan Jones rose at the back post to nod in Crawford’s corner to net them the win.
The home side finished the stronger of the two and Wanderers keeper Fish had to pull off a number of smart stops to keep the scoreline at 3-2.
Jackson later picked out Fish and striker Organ-Simpson as the heartbeat of his side’s impressive performance.
West Pier 3 Whitby Wanderers 2