Caswell moves to within one goal of scoring record for Welwyn Garden City FC
- Credit: Archant
Welwyn Garden City, at long last, made a trip to North Bucks, for this much-postponed fixture at Stony Stratford and came away with a comfortable 4-0 victory.
The fixture, originally scheduled for November 2, has been five times postponed following the monsoon-like weather since the beginning of the year.
Eventually, Adam Fisher’s side got the game played, but did so without four of their regulars - Daryl Smith, Perry Stellon, Isaac Oppong and Bradley Jenner - all missed the trip.
Stony had improved considerably since the sides’ first meeting of the season, which saw WGC score their biggest win of the campaign so far, handing out a 10-1 thrashing at Herns Lane in September.
And that improvement was evident in the opening half-hour, when the home side restricted the Citizens to a Jason Caswell effort, well saved by keeper Matt Hayward in 15 minutes and two off-target attempts by his strike part Joel Norris.
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The breakthrough, when it came six minutes from the break, came from the unlikely source of full-back Sam Perrin, who struck a powerful, swerving effort past Hayward after Caswell had cushioned a Craig Arnott pass off to him, to see WGC 1-0 ahead at the break.
Once in front, the second-half became much more comfortable for the visitors and Stony hardly offered a threat.
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It became 2-0 eight minutes after the restart, when Perrin turned provider, standing up a good cross for Caswell to score with a fine, flicked header beyond Hayward, to top 40 goals for this season.
WGC’s third, also scored by Caswell, with 20 minutes left was a picture goal.
Begun by substitute Paul Taylor and played on by Norris, it saw Caswell switch passes with Sean Brettell, before despatching a low shot past the keeper into the bottom corner. It also took the scorer to within one goal of the club’s all-time scoring record of 42 in a season, set by Terry Hayes in the late 1980s.
But it proved Caswell’s last action of the evening. Moments later he was taken off by manager Fisher to protect a rib injury he had sustained in the win over Kings Langley, the previous Saturday.
There was still time for a WGC fourth and it came from good chasing and retrieval by Brettell. He kept in a ball that looked to be going out and set up Arnott, WGC’s most impressive performer on the night, to hit a well-struck volley, but straight at Hayward.
The keeper looked to have held it, but allowed it to slip from his grasp and underneath him and it rolled over the line before he could hook it back to safety.
WGC: Croft, Perrin, Costain (Oteng 69), Kenna, Brettell, Awad, Cifuentes, Arnott, Osobu (Taylor 61), Norris, Caswell (Lamptey 73).