Whickham maintained their strong start to the season with a hard-fought 2-0 away victory against newly promoted Pickering Town.
Nathan Greenwood opened the scoring at the near post in the opening 20 minutes before Scott Robson doubled the visitor’s lead in the final quarter of the match.
The Lang Jacks started the brighter of the two teams and should have been ahead within seconds after kick-off.
Scott Robson latched onto a through-ball, but his shot was saved by the legs of Pickering goalkeeper Jack Norton.
The visitors continued to apply the pressure and Kieran Galbraith was next to come close to opening the scoring.
The defender got onto the end of a Mitchell Ramsay cross, but his header went wide of Norton’s far post.
The deadlock was broken on 17 minutes, Tom Howard and Ross Peareth played a smart one-two to set Scott Robson through, but Norton rushed out to knock the ball out for a throw-in.
Howard took the resulting throw-in and found an unmarked Nathan Greenwood at the near post to poke the ball past Norton and put the Lang Jacks a goal up.
Pickering thought they had equalised when their shot hit the underside of Nathan Harker’s crossbar, but defender Dom Agnew was there to clear the danger.
Nathan Greenwood almost grabbed his second of the night with a brilliant solo effort.
The winger dribbled past four Pickering players before curling his shot just wide of Norton’s far post.
As the first half was coming to an end, former Whickham goalkeeper Norton was sin-binned for ten minutes for foul language.
The second half started identical to the first half and Scott Robson had a great opportunity to put Whickham two goals up.
Ramsay skilfully clipped the ball past the replacement goalkeeper and found Robson in aches of space, but his goal-bound header was blocked by a Pickering defender.
The home team pushed forward for an equaliser, but Harker produced two strong saves to keep his team’s slender lead intact.
Scott Robson then met an inch-perfect Jamie Dunn delivery but watched his header come crashing back off Norton’s crossbar.
Greenwood was next to have a go after collecting a perfectly placed fizzed ball over the top by substitute Kaleb Young.
The winger took his man down the byline before cutting back and forcing Norton into a smart save.
Whickham finally scored the all-important second goal of the evening after Joey Smith set Robson away and the striker neatly rounded Norton before tapping in and sealing all three points.
In the final few seconds of stoppage time, Harker pulled off a full stretch save to deny Pickering a consolation goal and secure all three points and a clean sheet for the visitors.
Whickham team: Harker, Howard, Agnew, Galbraith, Yoxall (Young 58’), Priest (Below 88’), Peareth ©, Dunn (Richardson 65’), Ramsay (Smith 58’), Scott Robson (Hall 80’), Greenwood.
Goalscorers: Greenwood 17’, S. Robson 76’
Man of the Match: George Priest