Table Toppers Topple Ashton

Bradford (Park Avenue) staged a late comeback to clinch a stunning victory over Ashton United.

The hosts suffered an early setback when Bradley Jackson wriggled away from his marker and rifled past Steven Drench.

Bradford looked to respond swiftly but Jake Beesley headed wide after connecting with Ben McKenna’s delivery from the left.

A neat exchange between Matt Hill and Bradley Jackson freed the latter but his cross wasn’t capitalised upon by the on-rushing Ashton attackers.

It didn’t take long for the Robins to double their lead and send the travelling supporters into a frenzy. The outstretched glove of Drench touched Liam Martin’s effort, but he couldn’t prevent the ball nestling in the bottom corner.

An opportunity fell Jamie Spencer’s way after he burst into the box but the midfielder struck into the midriff of Ashton stopper Pilling.

Drench couldn’t keep Martin’s shot out, but he did deny Liam Tomsett, producing a spectacular save to thwart him at point blank range.

Drench had to be alert again as half-time approached, scrambling across his line to hold Matthew Regan’s flicked header.

HALF-TIME: Bradford (Park Avenue) 0-2 Ashton United

Bradford started the brightest after the interval but Nicky Clee’s cross was intercepted after he weaved his way past three defenders.

The makeshift left-back also drilled a free-kick into the wall before McKenna’s follow-up was held by Pilling.

The former occupant of the left-back position at the Horsfall Stadium, Hill, then tried his own luck but fired into a sea of bodies.

Bradford eventually made a breakthrough when Alex Hurst teed up Lewis Knight, allowing the forward to rifle past Pilling from distance and reduce the deficit.

An equaliser followed almost immediately as the ball fell to Shane Killock inside the box and the captain steered into the bottom corner.

A shellshocked Ashton backline were carved open again in stoppage time and Killock netted his second to clinch victory.

FULL-TIME: Bradford (Park Avenue) 3-2 Ashton United

Bradford (Park Avenue): Drench, Ross, Clee, Wroe (Lowe 45’), Killock (c), Havern, Spencer (Nowakowski 71’), Branson, Beesley, McKenna, (Hurst 71′), Knight.

Unused substitutes: Toulson, Atkinson.

Ashton United: Pilling, Lees (c) (Casian-Anghel 90+3’), Hill (Crowther 90+3’), Ashworth, Chalmers, Sheridan, Jackson, Regan, Martin, Tomsett (Kay 78′), Askew.

Unused substitutes: Howarth, Roberts.

Referee: Michael Barlow

Attendance: 474