A late brace from substitute Danial Hogg booked Euxton Villa’s place in the second round of the Richardson Cup.
Mark McDonnell’s side got a deserved victory against Hesketh Bank but they had to do it the hard way as they fell behind early in the second half to a Michael Howarth strike.
Midfielder Byron Andrew drew the sides level with just over 20 minutes remaining before a Hogg double two minutes from time sealed the victory.
McDonnell had to make changes prior to kick-off as former Hesketh Bank forward Dan Birkby broke down in the warm-up, which meant a first start of the season for Ric Coley.
Utility man Dan Morris was also missing which allowed Danny Marland back into the starting line-up.
Despite the torrential rain, the Villa pitch was in top condition, it was the visitors who had the better start in a tight opening period.
Shaun Gibbs’ post was
rattled after smart work down the left-hand side.
Villa responded with Marland and Horner having success down either wing.
Coley hit a speculative effort from 30 yards but that was the best it got for both sides in the first half.
Five minutes into the second half, the visitors took the lead when the ball was worked into the box and Howarth stroked home an effort into the corner of the net.
Euxton acted quickly and introduced Hogg from the bench.
The pace of Hogg immediately caused problems as Euxton upped the tempo and with 20 minutes, remaining the home side drew level.
Full-back Danny Hutton combined well with Hogg and the latter sent a cross into the area which Andrew headed in off the post.
Sam Bolton was introduced from the bench to ensure Euxton wouldn’t be shipping any more goals.
The equaliser seemed to knock the wind out of Hesketh Bank and they sat back soaking up the Euxton pressure.
Villa continued to press with chances a plenty throughout the side.
Hogg and Marland had chances to give Villa the lead, the latter being denied by an excellent Ruairi McDaid save.
With the tie edging towards penalties Hogg produced a moment of class to put the home side in front.
A long ball was played over the top, Hogg showed great pace first breaking the defensive line before sliding in beating the onrushing keeper to the ball to send the Villa team and management wild.
Hesketh pushed for an equaliser but in the late stages of stoppage time, Hogg latched on to a through ball and despite almost being pulled down in the penalty area, the referee played the advantage and the former Charnock Richard man lashed it into the corner to seal a second round place.
n Coppull United will take their place in the second round after they defeated Lostock St Gerard’s in a five-goal thriller.
Nathan Fairhurst, Ryan Stanners and Tony Hartley were the scorers in a 3-2 away victory.