1 - 2Full Time
Spennymoor beat Darlington in a league fixture for the first ever time after memorable long range free-kicks from Glen Taylor and Stephen Brogan.
A flat first half performance featured little in the way of goalmouth action, but after James Curtis had fouled Stephen Thompson in the area, the striker converted the resulting spot kick.
Moors responded in the second half and equalised when Taylor continued his fine run of form by hammering a 30 yard free-kick in front of the travelling Spennymoor contingent.
A scrappy game was decided when Brogan curled in an equally brilliant free-kick from a similar range, prompting wild scenes in the away end.
Jason Ainsley named the same starting eleven that defeated Sutton United 3-0 in the FA Trophy, with Mark Anderson taking his place on the bench after missing the last few games with injury.
Coined a derby by some supporters, however not all, there was a lack of intensity and quality in a tepid first half at Blackwell Meadows.
Darlington were the more positive of the two sides in the early exchanges but struggled to test Matt Gould, but when Thompson wriggled into the area, he went down under a lunging challenge from Curtis.
The Quakers forward stepped up and arrowed his spot kick off the post and in, but the tempo of the match failed to change, with Moors struggling to carve out opportunities.
Andrew Johnson had Moors’ only meaningful attempt, but his skewed shot from the edge of the area sailed over Jonny Maddison’s goal.
Fresh from their half-time team talk, Moors emerged with a spring in their step and began to apply some sustained pressure to the Darlington goal.
However, with a distinct lack of chances opening up, it was left to the brilliance of Taylor, who is now only two goals behind his entire tally from last season, to find the leveller.
After Shane Henry was fouled by Josef Wheatley, Taylor lined up from 30 yards and struck the sweetest of strikes into the top corner, with Maddison unable to get near the ball.
The Moors striker promptly celebrated in front of an irate home support, ramping up an atmosphere that had previously lacked energy.
Taylor tested the Darlington keeper shortly after, but his downward header was saved well, before a mazy run from Callum Williams offered Moors another set-piece chance.
After the full back was scythed down, Taylor stepped aside to allow regular free-kick taker Brogan to take.
The left back, who netted fabulous efforts against Alfreton and Stockport, whipped the ball over the wall and into the top corner, once again leaving Maddison clutching at thin air.
The home side flattered to deceive in the closing moments as they desperately searched for an equaliser, but the closest they came was a skewed effort from Thompson which took a deflection, forcing Gould into a fairly routine save.
The final whistle signalled wild celebrations from the travelling Moors fans, earning Ainsley his first league win over Darlington.
Moors are at home to Chester next Saturday at The Brewery Field.
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|
|19th January 2019||3:00 pm||National League North||2018/19|