Hinckley AFC 6-1 Alvis Sporting
Three goals in each half meant that Hinckley AFC continued their recent run of good form with a 6-1 victory over Alvis Sporting this afternoon.
And it would have been more were it not for visiting ‘keeper Jack Hartopp, who made numerous good saves to keep Hinckley at bay.
It took Hinckley 25 minutes to break the deadlock through Nathan Walker’s screamer, and from then on there was no looking back. Matt Gardner added two more goals before the interval as Hinckley dominated the remainder of the first half.
A further treble arrived in a six minute spell in the second half – two from second half substitute Marco Adaggio, either side of Alex Morris’ first goal for the club, before Alvis grabbed a late consolation through Michael Healy’s penalty.
Despite the difficult conditions on a misty afternoon at St John’s Park, both sides tried to play good football, and Hinckley nearly took the lead early on. The ball broke to Gardner on the edge of the box, but he chipped over.
Then, Luke Richards beat his man on the left wing and delivered fierce cross, which Hartopp could only parry to the penalty spot, where Robbie Millington scuffed his shot wide.
Five minutes later, Richards cut in from the left flank and drilled a low right footed shot goalwards, but Hartopp was there to make the save.
Alvis’ first chance came after eighteen minutes, when indecision at the back allowed Healy a shot, but Jordan Rushton blocked and Hinckley cleared the danger.
Hinckley broke the deadlock after 25 minutes. 25 yards out, Walker let fly and the ball sailed into the top corner to give Hartopp no chance.
The same played tried to replicate the goal four minutes later, but a bobble meant that he could only slice wide.
On the half hour, Gardner missed a glorious chance by heading over from close range, and Hartopp denied Richards one on one as Hinckley controlled the game.
Then came two goals in three minutes shortly before half time, both for Gardner. First, he escaped his marker in the box to control Richards’ cross and coolly finish.
Hartopp’s stunning save denied Walker a second long range strike, but Hinckley scored from the resulting corner. The ball came in from the right, and despite missing a couple of players, Gardner was in the right place at the right time to score from barely a yard out.
After the break, the game game was quieter for a spell, before bursting into life again on the hour. Hinckley keeper Sam Arnold was called into action, reacting well to save Healy’s deflected shot.
But any hope Alvis had of salvaging something from the game was ended midway through the second half, when Hinckley scored three goals in six minutes.
Adaggio scored the first of this treble, finding space in the box to bring down Richards’ cross and finish from twelve yards.
Then three minutes later, a short corner was met by the head of Jordan Rushton, whose effort hit his own player. Morris sliced the rebound out of Hartopp’s reach to make it five.
Adaggio fizzed a shot narrowly wide of the post, and fellow substitute JJ Melligan’s 25 yard effort was superbly saved by the impressive Alvis ‘keeper.
But he could do nothing about Hinckley’s sixth on seventy minutes. Adaggio appeared to have lost the ball on the edge of the box, but he won it back and danced past two defenders before slotting home.
Despite Hinckley’s domination, Alvis continued to play their football, and they scored a consolation goal late on. Morris committed a foul in the box, and Healy blasted the penalty home.
Hartopp’s final act was to frustrate Melligan again, making a magnificent double save from point blank range to deny the Hinckley captain.
Carl Abbott’s side will be aiming for a repeat performance when Lichfield City visit St John’s Park on Tuesday night for a 7-45pm kick off.
Hinckley: Sam Arnold, Mitchell Tomlinson, Isaac Cooper, Jordan Rushton, Alex Morris, Avun Jephcott (JJ Melligan 57), Nathan Walker, Robbie Millington (Marco Adaggio 57), Matt Gardner (Justin Nisbett 67), Tyrone Clarke-O’Connell, Luke Richards. Subs not used: John Clapp, James Bennett-Tindall.
Goals: Nathan Walker (25), Matt Gardner (39 & 41), Marco Adaggio (64 & 70), Alex Morris (67).
Alvis: Jack Hartopp, Sam Odusoga, Ben Tennant, Steve Evans, Aaron Cheshire, Oliver Basham, Raj Virk, Dean Kimberlin, Michael Healy, Lewis Ludford (Ryan Palmer 49), Ellis Layfield. Subs not used: Luke O’Kane, Rob Chamberlaine.
Goal: Michael Healy (84 pen)