Darlington 4 Stevenage 1

Last updated : 07 December 2002 By Footymad Previewer

Darlington avoided a potential slip up as they eased their way into the third round and a possible glamour tie against one of the countryÂ’s big guns.

Conference strugglers Stevenage found themselves a goal down in the opening minute of the game when Darlington midfielder Richard Hodgson curled in a low drive from 25 yards after a mistake by Stevenage captain Robin Trott.

The visitors grabbed an equaliser in the third minute when the Darlington defence failed to cut out a Simon Wormull corner and Richard Howell powered in a close-range header.

The Quakers took a grip on the game and they could of regained the lead when defender Matthew Clarke narrowly headed over the bar from an Ashley Nicholls corner in the tenth minute.

Stevenage went close to taking the lead when Frenchman Jean Michel Sigere looped a header over Darlington keeper Chris Porter in the 12th minute, but the ball struck the crossbar.

In the 20th minute Jamie Campbell came to his sideÂ’s rescue when he cleared off the goal line after a strong run from Darlington frontman Richard Offiong.

Hodgson then headed against a post, in the 27th minute, as the home side dominated the game and in the 35th minute Offiong forced Stevenage keeper Mark Westhead into a full length save.

But the on-loan striker was not to be denied and he grabbed his first Darlington goal in the 38th minute after Hodgson had carved open the Boro defence.

The visitors conceded a third goal in the 46th minute when Darlington striker Barry Conlon converted his tenth goal of the season.

Darlington snapped their fourth goal in the 63rd minute when Hodgson again set up Offiong who burst clear to steer the ball past Westhead for his second goal of the game.