Beck the toast of the Town after Trophy win

Oli Johnson
Oli Johnson
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Conference North promotion chasers Harrogate Town pulled off one of the best results in their recent history as they knocked former league club Wrexham out of the FA Trophy on Saturday.

Mark Beck was the Town hero scoring both first round goals against his former club, who are currently third in the National League.

Beck’s first at the Racecourse Ground came four minutes before half-time as the striker guided George Thomson’s floated cross into the back of the net.

The former Darlington man’s second was much easier after Ryan Fallowfield’s excellent cross found Beck at the back post to convert.

Town boss Simon Weaver made four changes from the starting XI that drew 2-2 with Kidderminster 11 days earlier and handed a first start of the season to Lloyd Kerry after a nine-month injury lay-off.

Town made a bright start and were the first to go close to opening the scoring as Beck couldn’t quite make the right contact on Joe Leesley’s cross to find the bottom corner.

The former Wrexham man did make good contact moments later though as his sweetly struck left footed effort skimmed off the wet surface and just past the far post.

The hosts first opportunity arrived just after the half hour mark as Scott Boden flicked a header towards goal, but James Belshaw was equal to the effort.

Ten minutes later Beck found the net in Town colours for the first time as he guided Thomson’s floated cross into the back of the net with a well-placed header to give his side a narrow lead at the break.

Terry Kennedy almost doubled Town’s lead four minutes after the restart when his headed bounced up off the ground and towards goal, though Christian Dibble was able to turn the attempt round the post.

Beck claimed his second goal of the afternoon in the 69th minute as he peeled off his marker at the back post to head home Fallowfield’s excellent cross.

Guiseley’s trip to fellow national League side Gateshead in the FA Trophy was postponed due to a frozen pitch at the International Stadium and the two teams will try again tomorrow night (7.45).

And it was the same story for National League rivals FC Halifax Town whose FA Trophy hosting of divisional rivals Macclesfield Town also fell victim to the weather and the two sides will also look to play the fixture again tomorrow.

Bradford Park Avenue lost 4-3 at home to Tamworth in Conference North.

Former Norwich City striker Oli Johnson cancelled out an early opener for the visitors who went on to open up a 4-1 lead with 15 minutes to go, before substitute Adam Nowakowski and Johnson’s successful penalty set up a tense finish, which also saw Tamworth goalscorer Callum Powell sent off late on for two yellow cards as the visitors held on.

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The big freeze continues to disrupt the Evo-Stik Northern Premier Division, with all but two matches postponed on Saturday – including seventh-placed Farsley’s game at home to Matlock Town, writes THOMAS RITCHIE.

In Division 1 North, Ossett Albion’s derby match at home to Tadcaster Albion was also called off, while Brighouse Town will have been left wishing their match was cancelled too, as they were thrashed 5-1 by title challengers South Shields.

Goals from Carl Finnigan and Louis Storey gave South Shields a two-goal advantage at the break, before Gabriel Johnson slotted home Aaron Martin’s cross to give the hosts hope.

However, Brighouse’s Adam Field was then sent off as he committed a foul in the box, with Barrie Smith converting the spot-kick to re-establish the visitors’ two-goal advantage. Late strikes from Graeme Armstrong and Alex Nicholson secured an emphatic victory for South Shields who moved top of the league.

In an all-Yorkshire tie by the coast, Ossett Town slipped to their fifth consecutive defeat as they lost 3-1 to Scarborough Athletic.

A mix-up in defence allowed Kai Hancock to give Ossett the lead, before Max Wright slammed home from close range to ensure the sides went into the break on level terms.

Danny Stimpson and Michael Coulson both headed home second-half goals as Scarborough made it four consecutive wins, and their third over Ossett Town this season.

Frickley Athletic’s game at home to Newcastle Town in Division 1 South also fell foul to the weather, and they now sit eighth in the league.

The weather also ruined the Northern Counties East League programme, with just five matches going ahead across the two divisions.

In the Premier, Hemsworth MW were two goals down inside 20 minutes at home to West Yorkshire rivals Albion Sports, but they battled back to earn a share of the spoils in a 3-3 draw.

Luke Danville (45), Adam Hayton (66) and Nash Connolly (84) replying to goals from Sumaili Cissa (11), Daniel Facey (19) and Nathan Woodward (75). In Division 1, Campion lost 1-0 at home to Winterton Rangers.

John Rooney

Healey’s hat-trick cannot deny ten-man Guiseley a rare victory