Updated Gallery: Hatfield power to fine victory over Arlesey
PUBLISHED: 11:02 24 December 2008 | UPDATED: 22:15 26 October 2009
Spartan South Midlands League Division One Hatfield Town 4 Arlesey Athletic 0 John Hutchinson reports from Herns Lane A RHYS Lawrence double helped Hatfield Town to a comfortable 4-0 victory at home to Arlesey Athletic to give Trevor Lloyd an early Chris
Spartan South Midlands League Division One
Hatfield Town 4 Arlesey Athletic 0
John Hutchinson reports from Herns Lane
A RHYS Lawrence double helped Hatfield Town to a comfortable 4-0 victory at home to Arlesey Athletic to give Trevor Lloyd an early Christmas present of three points.
The Blueboys were good value for their big win with their Bedfordshire opponents from the off looking likely to go back to Hitchin Road pointless.
The first half, in truth, was a scrappy affair, with Town having plenty of chances to go into the interval with a handsome lead.
Only four minutes in, a David Reade corner caused confusion in the Arlesey box, and when keeper Adam Hitchcock came to collect, the ball spilled out of his hands.
Daniel Staples managed to get on the end of the error, but his strong shot was deflected away from danger.
On 11 minutes, Staples was again involved when he got his head to a Reade free-kick, but saw his effort flash just wide.
The opening goal came just four minutes later.
A superb chipped pass from Trevor Golder split the Athletic defence and found its way to Rhys Lawrence bursting forward.
He kept his concentration to chip confidently over the advancing Hitchcock to put Lloyd's side into a deserved lead.
The visitors registered only one shot on target in a dour first-half display, when Dave Kiddie got himself in a good position on the right, cut inside and blasted an effort which only just sailed past Sam Lacey's post.
The hosts went into the break with a slender 1-0 advantage - but more than made up for a somewhat subdued first half with a tremendous second.
It took Hatfield only 10 minutes after the restart to extend their lead.
The hard-working Staples surged down the left and squared a superb ball to the feet of Lawrence, who smashed home his second of the game.
That goal seemed to destroy the confidence of the Ath, and the question was now more about how many Hatfield could win by, as opposed to who would be victorious.
On 65 minutes, boss Lloyd brought on Gary Coley in centre midfield for the ever-willing Golder.
And it took Coley only six minutes to register Hatfield's third goal.
A clever pass from Lawrence picked out Coley free of the visiting centre-backs, and he kept his nerve to prod past the helpless Hitchcock.
Not bad for Town's usual centre-half who was rested to the bench after recent absence.
At three goals to the good, there was now one thing that could round off a solid team performance, and that was a goal for the industrious Staples up front.
The strong forward hadn't scored a league goal since September 23, and if anyone deserved to break that duck it was most certainly the former Colney Heath player.
Fifteen minutes from time Reade, who was having a superb game on the wing, burst down the right and swung an inviting ball into the box where that man Staples got his boot on the end of the delivery to end his barren run.
There was still time for Lawrence to come close to marking an effervescent performance with a hat-trick when substitute Barrie Chamberlain picked him out free of his marker.
However, Hitchcock got down well to deflect his effort for a corner, which came to nothing.
Hatfield were well worth the three points that edge them closer to Royston Town and Kings Langley at the top of Division One of the Spartan South Midlands Football League.
Lloyd's side are now only three points behind second-placed Langley after the Kings lost away at Amersham Town 1-0.
Town's man-of-the-match was John McGrandles.
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