Jon Shaw’s side were aiming to bounce back from Tuesday night’s narrow 1-0 defeat at home to Scarborough Athletic as Warrington Town were the visitors to Croft Park on Saturday afternoon.
However, Nicky Deverdics’ penalty was not enough to earn a point out of Saturday’s encounter as goals from Bohan Dixon and Matthew McDonald secured three points for the visitors.
The Yellows opened the scoring in the third minute through Bohan Dixon who latched onto Dan Langley’s punched clearance with a volley resulting from Sean Williams’ lofted corner ahead of a Spartans attempted defensive clearance.
On 10 minutes, Matthew Grivosti set Isaac Buckley-Ricketts into the penalty area before the pacey winger cut inside and slide the ball underneath the advancing Langley, however, to Spartans’ delight, the flag was raised for offside.
A slick combination between Jack Bodenham and Nicky Deverdics set Michael Liddle to the byline for where he cut the ball back for the onrushing Will McGowan, however, under pressure from Williams, the inviting ball trickled to safety.
McGowan had another opportunity on 21 minutes where Harry Gardiner teed him up just inside the penalty area but Andrew White was alert to quickly close him down and put his body on the line.
On the half-hour mark, Liddle collided with Dixon as he was tracking back contesting for the ball before the visitors could attempt to form a counterattack. Unfortunately for Liddle and Jon Shaw’s side, his foot looked to have planted in the turf affecting his knee which saw Jordan Hickey come on in his place and a change of formation.
Langley was called into action just before half-time parrying Dixon’s powerful effort away to safety which was hit from range.
Half-time: Blyth Spartans 0 – 1 Warrington Town
The first clear-cut opportunity of the second period fell to Finn Cousin-Dawson at point-blank range just outside the Yellows’ six-yard box just shy of 10 minutes played. Deverdics’ intricate free-kick swung in from the left flank and was glanced off the upright by the Bradford City loanee, ultimately Spartans’ best game opportunity thus far.
After the hour mark, Cousin-Dawson was penalised for a foul on the edge of Blyth’s penalty area, presenting a perfect opportunity for Matthew Grivosti to test Langley. His dangerous free-kick beat the defensive wall but Langley was alert to dive high to his left to deny Grivosti before Williams sent a volley over the crossbar.
Just two minutes later, an intelligent turn by Gardiner in the penalty area saw him be bundled to the turf following a sweeping move entering the final third from Jon Shaw’s side resulting in a penalty. Deverdics took control of the ball and stepped up to the mark; he sent an emphatic effort into the top right-hand corner to draw Spartans level.
Despite Spartans looking to add to their equaliser which saw Hickey hit two efforts from range goalwards, one being on target and the other trickling wide, it was the visitors who managed to get their noses back in front through Matthew McDonald as he slotted home from close range on 77 minutes.
The prior introduction of JJ Hooper who had replaced Jordan Cook almost paid dividends in the final minute of the seven provided for additional time as he cut inside and fired a curling effort goalwards which was destined for the bottom corner, however, a resolute Evan Gumbs deflected the effort off target.
Full-time: Blyth Spartans 1 – 2 Warrington Town
Blyth Spartans | Dan Langley, Rhys Evans, Harrison Clark, Finn Cousin-Dawson, Jack Bodenham, Michael Liddle (Jordan Hickey, 30’), Elliot Forbes, Nicky Deverdics, Will McGowan, Jordan Cook (JJ Hooper, 60’), Harry Gardiner.
Subs not used | Michael Hogan, Billy Gordon, Rio Joisce
Goals | Nicky Deverdics 66′
Warrington Town | Dan Atherton, Declan Walker (Andre Wisdom, 69′), Andrew White, Tom Hannigan, Connor Woods (Evan Gumbs, 87′), Sean Williams ©, Matthew McDonald, Bohan Dixon, Isaac Buckley-Ricketts, Matthew Grivosti (Jay Harris, 69′), Peter Clarke.
Subs not used | George Goudie, Deacon Smalley
Goals | Bohan Dixon 3’, Matthew McDonald 77′
Attendance | 730
Referee | Matthew McQuillan
Spartans next face off against Hereford at Edgar Street on Saturday 3rd February, with a 3pm kick-off before taking on Scunthorpe United at Croft Park three days later, Tuesday 6th February, with a 7:45pm kick-off.