Baillie secures safe passage for blues
A James Baillie strike seven minutes into the second half was all that separated the two teams in an entertaining FA Cup tie at sunny Gorsey Lane.
Rylands started the game on the front foot forcing Stockton Town goalkeeper Callum Roberts into a couple of good saves in the opening 25 minutes to deny Adama Sidibeh and Ben Hardcastle while Michael Sweet headed a Matt Regan effort from a corner off the line and several other attempts were off target.
As the first half wore on the visitors came more into the game and started to cause the home side’s defence problems. Sweet got on the end on a dangerous cross but could not guide it goal wards, while Stephen Thompson unleashed a shot from distance which was not too far wide.
The game’s decisive moment came in the 52nd minute when Sidibeh pulled the ball across the 18 yard line to Mo Touray who fed into the path of Baillie who smashed the ball into the roof of the Stockton net from close range.
Rylands were now dominating the game with only Roberts seemingly standing between them and a place in the next round; on three occasions in the next 10 minutes he denied Sidibeh the opportunity to put the tie out of the North Easterner’s reach with three top class saves.
As they did in the first half Stockton came more into the game as it went on forcing Rylands into some desperate defending to keep their goal intact with goalkeeper Luke Pilling matching his opposite number’s performance.
The Rylands No.1 dived full stretch to turn away a long range Elliott Beddow shot and did well to smoother the ball at the feet of the same player from a dangerous cross into the box.
With the game deep into stoppage time, Stockton’s Sweet delivered a last desperate cross into the Rylands penalty area, Beddow got to it first but his touch was too heavy and the ball went wide to the relief of the home side who took their place in the next round.
WARRINGTON RYLANDS: Pilling Baillie Swaby-Neavin Regan (Egerton) Butler Neild Hardcastle Hough (Kyffin) Sidibeh Touray Maieco (Smith); Sub not used: Hives
STOCKTON TOWN: Roberts King McWilliams Butterworth Nicholson Coulthard Hayes Painter Fowler Thompson Sweet; SUBS: Beddow Mulligan Mulligan Hasse Jones Johnson Frampton
Referee: S Briggs