Bury 3 PNE 3 (PNE Win 5-4 On Penalties)
Thorsten Stuckmann was again the penalty king after a six-goal thriller at Gigg Lane ended with North End through the area semi-finals.
The German stopper saved Gregg Wylde's fifth and final Bury penalty, before Graham Cummins converted North End's fifth to send North End through to a clash with Coventry City in January.
Jack King had given the Lilywhites the lead with a brilliant set piece manoeuvre 25 minutes into the tie, with the first shot on target of the game, firing low and hard from the edge of the box where Joel Byrom had perfectly placed a corner.
After the break the floodgates opened. Firstly Joe Skarz controversially headed home after Bury failed to give North End the ball back after Stuckmann had put it out for Andy Procter to receive treatment. Procter himself fired home his first goal for the Lilywhites, but Matt Doherty levelled it up.
Stuart Beavon then capitalised on Trevor Carson's mistake in the final minute, but in the first minute of injury time Steven Schumacher fired home a wonderful free kick to take the game to spot kicks.
Shane Cansdell-Sherriff was sent off before the end, but it was German keeper Thorsten Stuickmann who again proved the hero with a marvellous penalty save from Wylde and then Cummins slammed powefully down the middle to make it five perfect spot kicks following Procter, Byrom, Beavon and Mousinho.
The opening goal, King's sicth of the campaign, had brought the match to life, as until that time it had been a cagey affair.
North End had made four changes to the side that drew 0-0 at Fratton Park, Beavon, John Mousinho, Cummins and debutant Luke Foster coming into the starting line-up.
It took 15 minutes for either side to carve out an opening, PNE skipper John Mousinho firing wide from a good opportunity on the edge of the ‘D’ after simple ball inside by Jeffrey Monakana.
Two minutes later the home side created their first chance, a good cross from skipper Steven Schumacher from the right flashed right across six yard box, but three onrushing Bury forwards couldn’t get a touch.
The best piece of play of the first half ultimately brought about the goal, a great tackle on edge of six yard box by Mark Hughes denying Stuart Beavon after he tried to smash home Cummins’ knock down from Monakana’s left wing cross.
From the resulting corner the opener came. It was a brilliant set piece. Joel Byrom played the ball out to Jack King making run from deep; his first time shot was smashed from the edge of the box. Bury keeper Carson got a hand onto it, but only parried it into the net.
Before the half hour mark it was almost two. And it was another brilliant set piece after Beavon had been brought down 25 yards out. Monakana went down the side of the wall and put the ball across, but Hughes managed to clear before Kind again pounced on the penalty spot.
Bury’s best chances came in the ten minutes before the interval. Firstly on 35 minutes, it required a great save from Thorsten Stuckmann to deny Matt Doherty with his legs, after the full back blasted his shot from 12 yards out in right hand channel.
Again with a minute left in the half, the German was in fine form, this time to deny former North Ender David Healy who connected with a David Worrall ball in from just eight yards out, but could only find the big pink-kitted custodian.
Right on the half-time whistle the Shakers’ stopper alos showed his prowess. A Joel Byrom pile driver from 25 yards was palmed away at full stretch by Trevor Carson.
Just before the whistle Lee Holmes replaced Jeffrey Monakana down North End’s left, with the young No.17 heading straight down the tunnel with the physio with a suspected injury.
Andy Procter stung the gloves of Carson in the 49th minute with some excellent control and then volley from 20 yards out in a right hand channel, but the keeper did well and held onto the strike.
With 11 minutes gone in the second half Stuart Beavon did brilliantly to spin and shoot after controlling a quick Jack King throw, but his effort from the right hand edge of the box was inches over the bar.
On the hour mark David Healy made a good run through the middle of the North End backline, however, new boy Luke Foster did brilliantly to make a superb block.
On 62 minutes Bury were level but in disgraceful circumstances. It came after Thorsten Stuckmann had thrown the ball out so Andy Procter could get treatment. Bury through it back in but attacked rather than giving it back. From it Healy won a free kick which was whipped in by Schumacher and flicked into the top corner by Joe Skarz.
Carson made a brilliant save on 67 minutes to deny Graham Cummins, after Holmes' whipped cross from the right; the Irishman diving in to get a powerful low header in, that the keeper had to get a strong palm to.
On 69 minutes North End were back in front. A ball in from deep was headed out and it reached Carson, who got a punch to the edge of the box, where Andy Procter controlled brilliantly and fired low into the bottom right hand corner.
With 12 minutes go Bury showed true grit to stay in the game, firstly Carson making a miraculous world class save to deny Graham Cummins after a quick free kick by Joel Byrom sent him through on goal. Then from the rebound firstly Jack King saw Mark Hughes throw his body at his shot and then from the next ball John Mousinho was denied by Joe Skarz.
Thorsten Stuckmann was in equally good form at the other end to deny Skarz a second from Bolton loanee Gregg Wylde's corner from the right hand side with eight minutes left on the clock.
But he could do nothing to prevent the equaliser from Doherty. The ball was drilled in from the right and flicked in at the near post by the right back, equalling the feat of his opposite full back in scoring.
On 86 minutes North End were denied a third three times. Firstly Joel Byrom's effort was brilliantly saved by Carson. He then prevented Beavon from the rebound before the ball looped up and Graham Cummins headed goalwards only for Skarz to clear off the line.
As Bury broke Shane Cansdell-Sherriff brought down the break and was given a second yellow card and sent off for the second time this season, ruling him out for the next two games.
It looked like the game would go to extra-time, but substitute David Amoo ran through and powered a shot. It was blocked, but looped up in the air and as it came down Carson dropped it allowing Beavon to pounce and poke the ball goalwards. This time Efe Sodje was on the line, but he couldn't clear it before it crossed the line with a minute left.
However, that wasn't it. Five minutes of stoppage time was added on and in the first minute Steven Schumacher was awarded a free kick 25 yards out. He lined it up and hit a powerful curling shot over the wall and into the top left hand corner to level it up again!
That was finally it and the game went straight to penalties...
1 Schumacher (scores, high right); Procter (scores, high right)
2 Doherty (scores, high left); Byrom (scores, low right)
3 C Jones (scores,high left); Beavon (scores high left)
4 Hughes (scores, down middle); Mousinho (scores, high left)
5 Wylde (saved low right); Cummins (scores, high and central)
Bury Line-Up: Carson, Skarz, Worrall (C Jones, 90), Schumacher, Sodje, Hughes, Healy (Hewitt, 75), Hopper (John-Lewis, 74), Doherty, Thomspon, Wylde. Subs not used: A Jones, Soares.
: Stuckmann, King, Cansdell-Sherriff, Procter, Wright, Foster, Mousinho, Byrom, Cummins, Beavon, Monakana (Holmes, 45 (Amoo, 88)). Subs not used: Simonsen, Welsh, Elding.PNE Line-Up
: Mr Gary SuttonReferee
: 2,023 (783 away fans)Attendance