Stockton went into the game licking their wounds from Saturdays home defeat to Durham City. Into the starting line up came Chris Dunwell, Fred Woodhouse and Joe Carter against a Bedlington team that were on an impressive run.
This game turned out to have everything, 9 goals, 8 yellow cards, 2 red cards, 3 penalty’s and 1 of them missed.
The game started with Stockton on top and deservedly went two goals up, Joe Scaife Wheatley opened the scoring after 7 minutes when he finished off a good move after being put in by Chris Stockton’s chested lay off. Next on the score sheet was Joe Carter after 15 minutes, cutting in from the right his left footed effort flew past David Stewart in the Bedlington goal.
Stockton were a threat everytime they went forward and were dominating possession and chances. Chris Stockton almost made it 3-0 but Stewart made a fine save.
Then came the fightback from Bedlington when they were awarded the first of two penalty’s , after 21 minutes Liam Jordan raced off his line and his attempted tackle on Jack Foalie left the striker on the floor. The referee pointed to the spot, booked Jordan, before Lee Scott dispatched from 12 yards to make it 1 2.
This setback seemed to spur Stockton on and they regained their two goal cushion when Kallum Hannah scored after 26 minutes from a corner.
Stockton continued to dominate and it came as a surprise when Bedlington grabbed another goal back after 43 minutes, Lee Scott scored his second goal with a 25 yard shot that flew into the top corner of the net, to send Stockton into the break 3-2 up.
It was remarkable that Stockton only went in a goal up after a very good attacking display that left Bedlington at times with no answers.
They started the second half in the same way, within the first minute Chris Stockton had a chance to restore the two goal lead when he burst through but the keeper somehow managed to smother his attempt.
Stockton were then given another chance to restore the two goal lead, this time from the penalty spot after Adam Nicholson was brought down inside the area. Up stepped Kallum Hannahbut his effort was saved by the legs of Stewart, Woodhouse tried to turn the rebound in but again Stewart pushed the ball away which resulted in a goalmouth scramble, the ball was turned goal-wards once again but this time they cleared off the line and they eventually managed to clear.
This inspired Bedlington and the game swung their way after 60 minutes when Adam Nicholson and Bedlington’s Liam Clarke collided inside the box and the referee gave Bedlington a second penalty, to make matters worse the referee showed Nicholson a red card for stopping a goal scoring opportunity, this gave Scott the chance to score his second penalty of the game and to complete his hat trick putting the ball past Jordan to make the scores level.
The numerical advantage Bedlington had disappeared after 62 minutes, Luke Watson was given a second yellow card for deliberate hand ball, the referee dismissed the defender to make this game a 10 a side affair.
Stockton then pushed the self destruct button with some poor defending when Bedlington went ahead for the first time in the game. A long diagonal ball found Foalie through the middle and he easily drilled the ball past Jordan.
Stockton’s spirit saw them respond though and the scores were level again after 87 minutes when Joe Carter curled the ball into the top corner from the edge of the box. Only one winner now you thought but it turned out to be the opposite of what we all thought.
A long desperate clearance by Bedlington into the Stockton half was no danger at all until hesitation allowed Foalie to nip in and pinch the ball and he rolled the ball into an empty net for an unlikely winner for Bedlington.
An unbelievable finish to an incredible game and one many who were there or took part in, will never forget.