1 - 1Full Time
Nathan Buddle netted the winning penalty as Moors edged past West Auckland in a shootout after the sides drew 1-1 in normal time.
Amar Purewal cancelled out Gavin Codgon’s opener at the start of the second half after a tame first 45 minutes.
Joe Atkinson saved Adam Mitchell’s spot kick in a penalty shoot-out high on quality, allowing Buddle to convert to see Moors through.
The visitors, buoyed by their recent strong form in the league and in the FA Vase, lined up with Spennymoor legend Lewis Dodds in their midfield, as well as former Moors employees Mitchell and Rhys Greenwood.
Andy Lowe, who has been a permanent fixture in the dugout during Moors’ Durham Challenge Cup run this season, named a strong side with nine first team players in the starting line-up.
Only David Webb and Charlie Hindson represented the academy on a mild night at The Brewery Field.
The action on the field was uneventful for the majority of the opening stages of the game, with Cogdon’s tame header from close range the only chance of note.
As the half grew on it was West Auckland who began to find their feet and grow in confidence, going close when Anthony Bell found space on the edge of the area before zipping a shot over the bar via a deflection.
A drab first 45 minutes was forgotten about when Moors took the lead two minutes after the restart.
A deep ball to the back post wasn’t dealt with by West Auckland’s defence, allowing Andrew Johnson to cross for Cogdon who tucked away his seventh Durham Challenge Cup this season.
The lead only lasted for seven minutes as the game suddenly sprung to life. Joe Atkinson’s poor clearance was capitalised upon by Liam Hegaerty, and after he beat Chris Mason to the ball, he squared it to Amar Purewal who tapped in from a yard out unopposed.
Moors attempted to hit back quickly and almost retook the lead when Boyes’ header was well saved, before Johnson cut in and tested Flynn’s reflexes again.
In a game low on quality, one for the contests bright sparks, Bell, struck the post with 15 minutes remaining, before Mark Anderson hit a shot from distance over the bar.
With no extra-time scheduled, the match went straight to penalties, and after both sides converted their first three spot kicks, former Moors winger Mitchell’s weak shot was well saved by Atkinson.
Buddle sealed a route to the final four of the competition, where Moors will face one of Stockton Town, Seaham Red Star, Sunderland Under 23’s or Hartlepool United.
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