ROB Hopley’s timing is impeccable.

The striker came off the bench to make his 100th appearance for Witton Albion, and scored the game’s decisive goal.

It secured a first away win in the Northern Premier League for Carl Macauley’s men since September 12.

Curiously, that was also the previous occasion a visiting side left the Turnbull Ground with maximum points.

The former Colwyn Bay front man had served warning to the Seasiders moments earlier, prompting on-loan goalkeeper Ryan Whitley to produce a stunning save with his fingertips to divert a curling shot onto the crossbar.

He was alert on 76 minutes when he intercepted Callum Martin’s blind back-pass.

After Whitley had saved his initial attempt, the 32-year-old swept in the rebound before celebrating a 55th goal in Witton’s colours.

That outcome may have felt remote when Kyle Fryatt converted Dan McWilliams’ cross from the left in the second minute.

Whitby, without a victory in their previous 10 matches, might have doubled their lead when James Risbrough fired straight at Anthony Gardner – with the goal at his mercy – after Junior Mondal cut back from the by-line.

Albion improved, and Will Jones called Whitley into action.

Macauley sent on Hopley to form a three-man attack with Jones and Steven Tames, sacrificing Prince Haywood, after the interval.

It worked, and Nick Ryan’s header struck an upright.

Whitley reacted smartly to save Hopley’s header before Owens nudged the ball over the line at the far post from Jones’ low centre.

The stage was set for Hopley, and he delivered.

Whitby | Whitley (GK), Martin, McWilliams, May, Bythway, Smith, Monkhouse (Gell 70), Fryatt (Weledji 66), Mondal (Salkeld 80), Tymon, Risbrough Subs not used McGoldrick, Dixon Goal Fryatt 2 Booked McWilliams, Smith

Witton | Hare (GK), Gardner (Wilson 79), McKenna, Ryan, Brown, Haywood (Hopley 46), Dale, Owens, Jones, Tames (Cesaire 90), Foley Subs not used Evans, Neild (GK) Goals Owens 60, Hopley 76

Referee Darren Whatling

Attendance 248