Gainsborough Trinity 2-0 Whitby Town

Gainsborough Trinity add a fourth consecutive win for the first time in over four years, as they comfortably beat Whitby Town.

A Declan Howe brace was enough for Trinity to record a fourth win in a row for a first time since January 2020.

The Holy Blues came into the game after a good start to 2024, picking up five wins from their last seven outings. The good run has brought Russ Wilcox’s side within striking distance of the top-half, after flirting with relegation before Christmas.

The visitors travelled down from Yorkshire off the back of a five game unbeaten run. The Seasiders were just seven points behind the play-off spots as they arrived at The Northolme. 


It was a scrappy start at the KAL Group Stadium, with neither side creating a chance in the first five minutes.

The hosts had the first effort in the 7th minute as Joe Stacey met a Lewis Butroid cross on the half-volley. His effort was deflected just wide for a Gainsborough corner as he sought to add to his two goals in 19 minutes across two substitute appearances.

However, the Holy Blues didn’t have to wait long for their first goal. Captain Dylan Cogill sent a long ball forward, which Declan Howe latched onto and cooly finished past Shane Bland to add goal number thirteen of the season.

Trinity had the ball in the back of the net again just a few minutes later. This time Howe got in behind the Whitby defence on the right-hand side, pulling the ball across the box for Lewis Butroid to tap in at the back post. 

However, assistant Laura van Lier raised her flag and cut the Gainsborough celebrations short.

Up the other end, Nathan Thomas fizzed a ball across the face of Hull City loanee David Robson’s goal. Jacob Gratton looked to stab it home, but couldn’t quite stretch his foot out far enough.

The game fell into a lull just before the half-hour mark, with Whitby easing their way into proceedings. The visitors were still struggling to create, as the best chances continued to come at the other end.

Captain Dylan Cogill had a header saved from a corner, and Howe had a couple more good chances: the first deflected wide and the second chipped just over the bar.

Trinity’s talisman was running the Seasiders’ defence ragged, getting through a struggling Whitby defence on countless occasions.

In the 36th minute, Gainsborough doubled their lead. Howe had his second as he was found in time and space by the on-loan Stacey. He took a step to the right before lashing a shot home from the centre of the box.

It was a dominant first-half display from the hosts as they controlled the opening 45 minutes from start to finish. They could have been out of sight at the break, but they had left the door open to a capable Whitby side.

Gainsborough Trinity 2-0 Whitby Town
Trinity record their sixth win of 2024.


The visitors came out for the second-half with more fire than they showed in the first. However, Gainsborough managed to weather a quick storm. Cogill almost converted from a free-kick with a stab at the near post.

Much to his chagrin, Whitby’s top-scorer Junior Mondal was subbed off just prior to the hour mark. He hadn’t managed to affect the game at all, like his counterpart Stacey.

Howe had a chance to complete his hat-trick, but sliced a shot high and handsomely over the Whitby goal.

As the game passed 60 minutes, the Seasiders went close. Substitute Stephen Walker was integral to the play as Cogill was forced into a bit of last ditch defending as he deflected a shot for a corner.

Lewis Hawkins sent an audacious effort from 25-yards-out with 20 minutes to go. He caught Robson off guard, but the shot landed just wide of the post. 

Whitby were much improved in the second-half, but the hosts managed to weather a storm and continue to create good chances.

Howe was at the centre of everything good for Gainsborough, supported well by Stacey and former Scotland under-19s international Fraser Preston. 

The game should have been put to bed with ten minutes to go as Bobby Johnson threaded a neat through-ball to Preston, who had Howe alongside him in a two on one. 

Preston decided against squaring the ball to Trinity’s top-scorer, instead shooting from inside the box. Bland produced a good diving save, but could only parry the ball into the path of Howe. Aaron Haswell shot across to block Howe’s effort off the line and deny him a hat-trick.

Whitby had a chance with five minutes left, as Harrison Beeden got on the end of a Daniel Rowe pass. But, his chip was straight into the hands of Trinity’s ‘keeper.

It was a controlled second-half, as Gainsborough did enough to keep a clean sheet and make their first-half dominance count for another three points.

Gainsborough Trinity 2-0 Whitby Town:

Gainsborough Trinity added a fourth win in a row for the first time since January 2020, as a dominant first-half display produced enough for maximum points.

After the break, it was more end-to-end. Although, Whitby Town didn’t have enough to trouble the scoreboard. 

Next week, Gainsborough return the favour and travel to the Yorkshire coast to face Whitby in the reverse fixture.