Stockton Town were without long term injured Scott Meehan and Michael Arthur and recently injured Tony Johnson and Max Craggs. This saw starting opportunities for Ben Priestly and Joe Scaife Wheatley. Stockton wasted no time springing into action, with an early cross into a crowded box by Joe Scaife-Wheatley finding Chris Stockton in the box, but the striker’s low shot was caught well by Jarrow keeper, Lee Burrell, who had a busy day today! Stockton managed to net the first goal after a spell of attacking pressure on 7 minutes when a run towards the box by Joe Scaife-Wheatley saw the midfielder calmly take the ball on his chest before unleashing an unstoppable strike from the edge of the box into the top left corner of goal for the opener.
Stockton quickly doubled their lead just over two minutes later through Chris Stockton. The forward managed to net the second of the match when a through ball in the box by Stephen Roberts (Or ‘Stavros’ as known by STFC supporters) found Stockton, who managed to hit low into the bottom left hand corner.
An uneventful spell arrived where although Stockton maintained the majority of possession, they could not get past a strong Jarrow defence. The hosts went close on 27 minutes however when a cross in the box by Stephen Roberts found Kallum Hannah, who headed the ball off the crossbar. Upon the rebound however, the hosts went close again when the ball landed in the feet of James Ward, whose shot from the edge of a crowded box was caught by Jarrow keeper, Lee Burrell and moments later, a run in the box by Chris Stockton saw the forward’s shot from the edge of the box hit the post as it was cleared by the Jarrow defence.
Jarrow tried their best to get back into the match and were close to bringing a goal back when a free kick from 25 yards by midfielder, Steven Graham was curled into the box and headed away by a Stockton defender, though it, instead found Jarrow defender Paul Burrell, whose volley from 20 yards was fiated over the bar by Stockton keeper, Liam Jordan though the corner that came of it was easily cleared. Despite a 25 yard curled ball in the box by Stephen Roberts finding Joe Scaife-Wheatley, who headed over and a low, long range strike by Kallum Hannah being easily caught by the Jarrow keeper, both sides failed to score anymore in the half as it ended 2-0 Stockton.
With the second half kicking off at 14:24-ish, Jarrow started the half better and quickly made an impact by bringing a goal back. A corner for the visitors was launched to Andrew Wilkinson, who turned and struck a low volley through a crowded box to pull one back for the South Tynesiders.
Stockton got their wakeup call loud and clear and made it 3-1 soon after great link up play involving Kallum Hannah and Chris Stockton found Stephen Roberts, who connected with a diving header past Lee Burrell for Stockton’s third of the game.
Stockton soon made it 4-1 minutes later when a run towards the box by Chris Stockton saw the forward strike low from the edge of the box into the bottom right hand corner for Stockton’s 4th of the game.
With Nick Little replacing Jarrow midfielder, Steven Graham and David Dowd replacing defender Matthew Garbutt for the hosts, Stockton gained a 5th goal on 69 minutes when some good forward passing in deep opposition territory found Chris Stockton, who was able to turn and shoot low in the box past the keeper to make it 5-1 and gain his hat trick!
With Sonny Coleman replacing Chris Dunwell for the hosts, a curled free kick in the box by Stephen Roberts found Chris Stockton again, but he instead headed the cross off the crossbar. He did the same again minutes later when a cross in the box by Stephen Roberts following a good run along the right touchline found Stockton, who this time headed it into the keeper’s arms.
Jarrow slowly began to pressurise towards the remaining few minutes of the game and with 3 minutes to go, managed to pull another goal back when a one on one effort for Peter Kane saw the forward strike low past Liam Jordan for Jarrow’s 2nd of the game.
Jarrow immediately got a third too when a cross in a crowded box for the visitors saw Andrew Wilkinson leap the highest to nod the ball past Liam Jordan once more for his brace.
Jarrow really began to build pressure and made it 5-4 when some good forward play saw Andrew Wilkinson run around Liam Jordan, who was well out of his box in no man’s land and tap low into an open net for his hat trick and Jarrow’s 4th.
There was a final scare for Stockton when Jarrow had the ball in Stockton’s net but it was ruled out for offside in injury time.