A look at how our players are getting on away from the club
Young forward John McAtee was the star of the weekend as he scored twice and picked up the man of the match award in Halesowen’s 3-1 victory over Whitby Town. Whitby had actually gone in front inside the opening five minutes, but McAtee found an equaliser with a shot from the edge of the box. Jack Kelly then put Halesowen ahead when his cross-shot went in and McAtee rounded off the scoring in the 81st minute with a cool finish into the bottom corner. That result moves Halesowen up to 21st in the Evo-Stick Premier Division, just a point behind Whitby and those two goals take McAtee’s tally to six for the loan spell.
In the National League North two Town players faced each other on Saturday and it was honours even as Dom Smith’s Southport side drew 3-3 with Shaun Rowley’s Tamworth team. That result means that Southport are still waiting for their first victory since early September and realistically they should come away with it. Southport’s record signing, Jason Gilchrist, created history by becoming the first Sandgrounders player to score a hat-trick on his league debut and his third goal put Southport 3-1 up with 15 minutes remaining. But, when you haven’t won for nearly three months it can be difficult to get over the line and so it proved as Bradley Reid and Connor Taylor scored in the final 10 minutes to equalise for Tamworth.
In Wales, it was Welsh Cup weekend and both Ryan Sears’ Newtown and Callum Roberts’ TNS went through to the fourth round of the competition with comfortable victories. Roberts hasn’t been involved in the league in recent weeks but he was back in the side for this game on Friday night and TNS made light work of lower league opposition in Penrhyncoch. The New Saints scored six times without reply, including a hat-trick from Alex Darlington, as they continue to be involved in all four competitions they have entered this season. Meanwhile, Newtown won 2-0 on Saturday against a stubborn Guilsfield side. Neil Mitchell gave the Robins the lead midway through the first-half and Jamie Reed bagged himself a goal midway through the second period.
Finally, AJ Leitch-Smith was once again an unused substitute as Dundee continued their mini run of good form with a 2-0 victory over Ross County. Mark O’Hara and Faissal El Bakhtaoui grabbed the goals as Dundee moved out of the relegation spots and up to 9th.