Stockton Town will face Thatcham Town in the Buildbase FA Vase final at Wembley after an enthralling day of semi-final second leg action.
Thatcham overcame 1874 Northwich 3-2 at the Barton Stadium to become the first Hellenic League side since Didcot in 2006 to reach the Buildbase FA Vase final.
- Semi-final second leg
- 3pm, Saturday 24 March, 2018
- By Charlie Peat
Stockton Town 1-2 Marske United (3-2 on aggregate)
After a crucial 2-0 victory away from home, Stockton knew their rivals Marske would come out and attack from the word go at Bishopton Road West.
And the visitors made the perfect start after just eight minutes when forward Liam O’Sullivan did superbly to bring the ball down and slot home inside the penalty box.
O’Sullivan was causing all sorts of problems, not only with his forward play but his long throws into the box as Micky Arthur denied Danny Early from close range.
Stockton restored their two-goal advantage in the tie from the penalty spot as Nathan Mulligan fired into the net after 41 minutes after a foul on Kevin Hayes.
Marske needed two goals in the second half and after 55 minutes were back in the contest as a fine break was rounded off by James Fairley.
The visitors would’ve had their crucial third goal but for a sensational one-handed save from Arthur to deny Curtis Round.
And the Anchors held on to secure their spot in the final and a maiden trip to the home of football.
1874 Northwich 2-3 Thatcham Town (2-4 on aggregate)
The Kingfishers booked their place in an enthralling five-goal thriller away to 1874 Northwich, winning the tie 4-2 on aggregate.
The visitors looked to take the game away from their hosts and did just that, racing into an early lead thanks to Gavin James neat finish from a Shane Cooper-Clark free-kick.
James then had his second to put Town in dreamland, bundling home from a goalmouth scramble.
A Scott McGowan penalty for Northwich just before the break helped reduce the deficit but Cooper-Clark’s fine effort from the edge of the box early in the second half made 4-1 on aggregate to Town.
The task looked impossible for the hosts but on the 69th minute they were back in the tie thanks to a bullet header from Matt Woolly.
But it wasn’t enough to stop Thatcham progressing to their first Wembley final ever.
Tickets for Non-League Finals Day, which is held at Wembley Stadium on Sunday 20 May and also features the Buildbase FA Vase Final are already on sale. Find out more and purchase tickets here.