Hinckley AFC 4-1 Heather St John’s

Hinckley AFC 4-1 Heather St John’s

Hinckley AFC made it four league wins out of five with a comfortable Bank Holiday victory over landlords Heather St John’s at St John’s Park.

209 people braved a wet afternoon to see Hinckley dominate the early stages and race into a two goal lead thanks to Marco Adaggio and Mitchell Tomlinson. The ‘home’ side on this occasion were punished for taking their foot off the gas shortly before half time when Dave Yonwin pulled one back for Heather.

Second half goals from Luke Richards and a spectacular Adaggio strike settled the destination of the points.

Carl Abbott made five changes to the side that beat Bromsgrove Sporting on Saturday, with Jack Hartopp, Rico Taylor, Darious Darkin, Justin Nisbett and Deqwon Ebanks taking their places in the starting line up.

And just three minutes had passed when AFC took the lead. Richards posed a constant threat to full back Steve Olanipekun, and it was his left wing cross that Adaggio headed into the bottom corner to open the scoring.

Four minutes later, the Hinckley captain could have doubled his side’s lead but could only shoot straight at Ben Allsop after the ball broke his way following pinball in the middle of the park.

Before this game, Tomlinson had made 34 appearances for the club without getting on the scoresheet, and he opened his account on ten minutes. Richards was the creator again, twisting and turning past Olanipekun and pulling back low for Tomlinson to convert from eight yards.

After creating two goals himself, Richards nearly got on the scoresheet midway through the half, but his goalbound effort struck teammate Adaggio and bounced comfortably wide of goal.

Then, Dom Smith headed Nathan Walker’s corner straight at Allsop as Hinckley’s dominance of the game continued.

But as the match approached the half hour mark, Hinckley’s tempo slowed down and Heather started to gain a foothold in the game. Ryan Baxter should have halved the deficit, but somehow blazed over from six yards with an open goal after Hartopp spilled a high free kick.

It was another free kick from which Heather scored eight minutes before the interval, as Yonwin, unchallenged, capitalised on slack defending to head home a delivery from the left.

Abbott made a double change at the interval, introducing Javia Roberts and Neil MacKenzie, and the former had an impact in Hinckley’s third goal ten minutes after coming on.

Finishing off a good move, Roberts was in behind the Heather back line. After rounding Allsop his shot was cleared off the line by Joseph Obi, but the rebound fell to Richards on the corner of the six yard box, and he lashed home to restore Hinckley’s two goal advantage.

On the hour, Roberts found himself in on goal again, and after opting to take the ball around the Allsop he couldn’t direct his shot on target from an acute angle. From the resulting corner, debutant Darkin’s long range effort was saved.

The goal of the game was scored eleven minutes from time, to the amazement of fans and players alike. After a fluent passing move, Adaggio’s initial lacklustre shot was comfortably blocked. As the ball bounced, Adaggio acrobatically launched into an overhead kick, which found the top corner and gave Allsop no chance.

With the three points secured, the game petered out in the last ten minutes; the only action coming when Adaggio was denied a hattrick when his fifteen yard strike was deflected narrowly over.

Hinckley now have a three week break from league action, with the FA Vase trip to Wolves Sporting next week followed by the FA Cup First Qualifying Round visit of Redditch United in a fortnight.

Hinckley: Jack Hartopp, Mitchell Tomlinson, Rico Taylor, Dom Smith, Alex Morris, Darious Darkin, Justin Nisbett (Javia Roberts 45), Nathan Walker (Jean Kalenda 56), Deqwon Ebanks (Neil MacKenzie 45), Marco Adaggio, Luke Richards. Subs not used: Jamie Newton, Jack Jepson.

Goals: Marco Adaggio (3, 79), Mitchell Tomlinson (10), Luke Richards (56).

Heather: Ben Allsop, Steve Olanipekun, Matthew Selvester, Scott Goodby, Joseph Obi, Ryan Caputo, Tom Lapworth, Yoann Fournier, Dave Yonwin, Ryan Baxter, Sam Hickling (Grant Ryder 72). Subs not used: Scott Handley, Jacob Sturgess, Harry Wood.

Goal: Dave Yonwin (37)

Attendance: 209