FOR the third time this season Altrincham scored three times against Ashton United but have now won only one of those games in normal time after last weekend's 3-3 draw.

After a bright start from Altrincham, it needed a penalty from John Johnston to give them the lead. James Poole, who had been the game's most creative player, was brought down to bring about the spot-kick.

But Altrincham switched off after the re-start, allowing the hosts to equalise inside a minute when John Pritchard was left free to net from close range.

Ashton started the second half the better side but Alty hit them with two goals in a five-minute spell, either side of the hour mark.

The first of these came after goalkeeper Tony Thompson had made a superb stop from a Matthew Chadwick shot. Alty immediately put together a sweeping counter-attack, which culminated in Johnston netting from the left of the goal.

Five minutes later it was 3-1 to Altrincham when James Jones's header found the net following a corner.

Once again, though, Alty could not keep out their opponents and Ashton's Pritchard netted an excellent free kick on 67 minutes.

Ashton pressed for an equaliser and they got it in the 89th minute. Connor Hampson delayed a clearance and the ball was lost and after Ashton had struck the bar, the ball was headed home by Chadwick to make it 3-3.

Questions have to be asked about an Alty defence which had conceded only 10 goals in a 19-game run before the end of 2017 but which has now let in 11 in just seven league matches in 2018.