Town showed battling qualities to fight back from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Coalville Town.
Second-half goals from Matthew Tymon and John Campbell levelled for the Blues after Nathan Watson and Daniel Creaney opened an advantage for the visitors. Chris Hardy handed a second Whitby Town debut to Kevin Burgess, while Lewis Maloney had to sit on the bench. Jamie Poole was the only of the club’s new signings to miss out.
The early stages offered little in the way of entertainment for either side, with the first chance coming after twenty minutes. Steven Snaith’s ball forward was headed down into the path of Campbell by Tymon, who curled an effort from range onto the outside of the post. But it was the visitors who gained the initiative just three minutes later. Ryan Whitley was caught in no man’s land, and failed to recover properly as Watson worked his way into the box, the striker’s effort from 10 yards sneaking in at the near post.
In terms of action in the first half, that was to be the pinnacle, with either side failing to break into the final third. After the break, Whitby supporters would have been forgiven for a sense of worry, as the visitors doubled their lead. A ball over the top from deep picked out Creaney, who volleyed an unstoppable attempt past a rooted Whitley, as the Blues protested for a free-kick for an infringement on Tymon in the build-up.
Whitby, to their credit, kept battling on and almost found a way back into the game, Andy Monkhouse seeing his first-time effort saved smartly by Matthew Coton, before Lewis Maloney curled a free-kick over from 25 yards. But it was Tymon who would offer the Blues a route back into the clash in spectacular fashion. A ball forward found the Blues striker, who turned his man cleverly before volleying home from 25 yards, leaving Coton scrambling to reach it. With the tide turning in Whitby’s favour, a golden chance to equalise came about following good work from Campbell. Burgess’ ball from deep found the forward on a run. He took a heavy touch, though pursued the loose ball.
Coton rushed out to retrieve it, in the process taking Campbell down, leaving the referee with no option but to point to the spot. Campbell, playing his first full 90 minutes for the Blues, stepped up to the mark, putting aside the disappointment of his midweek miss and sending the ball into the bottom left corner confidently. And the Seasiders could have won it in the dying stages, substitute Junior Mondal forcing Coton into the save low to his right with an powerful effort, after beating two Coalville defenders.
Whitby Town: Whitley, Martin, McWilliams, Bythway, Burgess, Snaith (C), Monkhouse, Fryatt, Campbell, Tymon (Mondal ’88), Salkeld (Maloney ’56). Subs not used: May, Gell, Risbrough.