Longridge Town boss reflects on a job done with Crook Town victory

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Longridge Town boss Lee Ashcroft admitted his side earned FA Vase victory without finding their top form.

Town booked their place in Monday’s second round draw thanks to a 4-2 win against Crook Town at the Mike Riding Ground on Saturday.

Skipper Tom Ince, Danny Wilkinson, Cameron Gourley and Elliot Pond found the net for a Longridge side who netted three times in the second half to earn success.

“We weren’t at our best today,” Ashcroft told the club website afterwards.

“The groundsman has done ever so well to get the game on but we couldn’t play our football.

“They had a bit of a telling off at half-time after one or two were a bit sloppy.

“They came with a game plan and they were in our faces; fair play to them, they did what they did, but our quality came through at the end.”

Ince had given Longridge the lead with the only goal of the first half, and although their visitors equalised early in the second half, Wilkinson and Gourley gave them a two-goal lead before Pond wrapped up victory late on.

Ince’s goal was the most eye-catching with a strike from 25 yards which gave the visiting keeper no chance.

Wilkinson and Gourley netted as a result of set-pieces before Pond netted from the edge of the area.

“It was absolutely fantastic,” Ashcroft said of Ince’s goal.

“I do shooting sessions and he doesn’t hit the target but he’s scored two great goals in the last three games.

“I felt sorry for the keeper because he hadn’t dived before it had hit the back of the net; when he plays like that he’s different class.

“When he (Pond) gets it on his left foot, he’s dangerous, and it’s a fantastic strike.

“It’s job done and we’re into the next round; it’s a journey we’ve never been on before.”