Skelmersdale bow out of FA Cup after Harrogate prove too strong
Skelmersdale United, the FA Cup first round proper’s lowest-ranked team, bowed out of the competition following a 4-1 defeat at Harrogate
The North West Counties League outfit could not pull off a shock in front of the live TV cameras, as goals from Calvin Miller, Mark Beck, Jake Lawlor and Aaron Martin guided the hosts into the next round.
Daniel Mitchley did ensure Skem grabbed an 89th-minute consolation, however, with a well-struck volley.
Harrogate took just 47 seconds to open the scoring with former Scotland Under-21 international Miller beating Ben Barnes with an eight-yard drive after Beck had rattled an upright.
The visitors could have levelled almost immediately but NHS worker Mini Adegbenro could not add to his six goals already in this season’s competition when he flashed a shot wide of Joe Cracknell’s near post.
Instead, it was Harrogate who got the next goal in the third minute of first-half stoppage time when Beck glanced a header past policeman Barnes following Tom Walker’s right-wing free-kick.
The hosts’ third goal saw Lawlor’s deflected 10-yard shot find Barnes’ bottom-right corner after Skem had failed to clear George Thomson’s low free-kick from the right in the 68th minute.
A fourth quickly followed as Martin headed in from close to the penalty spot following Josh Falkingham’s 74th-minute cross, before Mitchley’s volley proved the best goal of the night.