AFC Fylde 1 Spennymoor Town 1: Nick Haughton equaliser earns FA Cup replay for Coasters
Fylde must travel to County Durham for an FA Cup replay after being held by National League North rivals Spennymoor Town in this second qualifying round tie at Mill Farm.
Nick Haughton’s equaliser cancelled out Brad Abbott’s second-half strike to earn Jim Bentley’s Coasters a rematch at Spennymoor’s Brewery Field on Tuesday.
Bentley made just one change to the league leaders’ starting line-up from the previous weekend’s win at Bradford Park Avenue, with Jacob Holland-Wilkinson replacing Sam Osborne on the wing. Jordan Hulme and Stephen Dobbie returned to the bench alongside latest signing Ethan Walker.
It was a fast start to proceedings and midfielder Luke Joyce almost gave the Coasters the lead inside five minutes, meeting a Haughton corner on the penalty spot and powering a header towards the far post only for Joe Tait to clear off the line.
On the quarter-hour, the overlapping Luke Conlan almost caught Town stopper Dale Eve out with a mishit cross but it was just too high.
Fylde began to find their groove, with Holland-Wilkinson, Ben Tollitt and Haughton all firing efforts just over the bar from distance.
Refusing to lie down, the Moors fought back and would have taken the lead if it wasn’t for Alex Whitmore’s timely intervention to dispossess Glen Taylor inside the six-yard box before he could pull the trigger.
A tight first half between in-form sides placed first and fourth in the table ended goalless.
But just three minutes into the second half Abbott put Spennymoor in front against the run of play.
The visitors worked the ball in to the midfielder, who fired a low strike into the bottom corner, giving keeper Chris Neal with little hope.
That lead lasted only eight minutes, though, as the freescoring Haughton produced a fine finish to curl into the top corner from the edge of the box.
The goal seemed to give the hosts confidence, and moments later Blackburn Rovers loanee Dan Pike drove forward and struck an effort from 25 yards which Eve managed to hold.
As the game entered the final 20 minutes, a crisp pass by David Perkins found Tollitt in the corner of the box. Shifting the ball on to his favoured right foot, the wideman's curling shot was inches wide of the far corner.
Debutant Walker was introduced for the final 20 minutes as was Hulme, who laid the ball off to Haughton and he blazed over when positioned to do better.
The final chance fell the way of Moor’s danger man Glen Taylor and the striker’s fierce drive was somehow turned over the bar by Neal to set up the midweek replay.
It means both clubs will feature in the Monday lunchtime draw for the next round.
Fylde: Neal, Conlan, Whitmore, Stott, Tollitt (Walker 70), Joyce, Perkins, Pike, Holland-Wilkinson (Osborne 60), Haughton, Sampson (Hulme 70); Subs not used: Jones, Nolan, Obi, Dobbie.
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