Hebburn Town were outclassed on Non-League Day as Lincoln United stole the show – and the three points – in a surprising 2-0 home defeat on Saturday.
Goals in quick succession by Matt Cotton and Jake Park in the 25th and 27th minutes respectively gave the visitors what they were after, and leaves Daniel Moore’s side scratching their heads as to what went wrong.
Hebburn came into the game on a good run of form, having lost just two since their last home defeat against Grimsby Borough in February (defeats away to Carlton and Long Eaton United).
The Whites, meanwhile, had endured four successive defeats before today’s match, which included a 1-0 loss against North East neighbours, North Shields.
A crowd of 455 cheerfully welcomed the Hebburn players but they weren’t treated with much entertainment compared to the small batch of away fans that made the long journey from Lincoln.
Both goals seemed slight: the first came as a result of Cotton poking a ball diagonally followed through by Kallum Smith which deflected itself off the post and blindsighted Hebburn keeper, Shaun Newbrook.
And the second seemed even gentler. Evan Payne lobbed the ball forward, and a few touches later met the path of goalscorer Park, whose unconvincing turn wrongfooted Newbrook again.
A series of corners near half-time saw Amar Purewal given three chances to score, but the scramble in the box proved too much on every occasion.
And while the second-half seemed brighter on Hebburn’s part, not a lot was created and the result remained as it was before the break.
A 2-0 win does the visitors a lot of good as they continue to hope to sequence some results to keep their heads above water.
But for Hebburn, the only team in the top six to have lost their match today (as champions Worksop, Stockton, Long Eaton and Stocksbridge Park Steels all won their matches), it is a blight to an otherwise impressive few games for the Tynesiders.
Moore’s side do stay second in the table with only a handful of matches remaining this season.
Hebburn Town: Newbrook, Walton, Groves, Reid, Devitt, Phillips (Hackett), Thompson (Moore), Murray, Purewal, Henderson (Spence), Martin.
Subs: Coulson, Harrison.
Lincoln United: Steggles, Payne, Smith, Priestley, Adelekan, Foster, Liversidge (Gibbons), Dye, Park (Smith), Cotton, Baker (Jarvis).
Subs: Griffin, Hudson.