Hinckley stormed into the next round of the FA Vase with a quite stunning 9-0 victory to see off higher-level Bewdley Town.
AFC were superb from minute one, their passing and movement was a joy to behold with every player looking so comfortable on the ball to leave Bewdley a demoralised side long before the end.
It was the ultimate team display with Lewis Rankin the outstanding performer. His resurgent form continued as he bagged a second half hat-trick as well as contributing to most of the other goals – and some of his link up play with Tom Weale was exceptional.
Joe Conneely and Courtney Hunter-Belford named a team unchanged from the 10-1 victory over Bridgnorth, and little did the fans know that they were to enjoy another goal fest. The tone was set inside two minutes, Rankin dinked in an early cross from the left that was headed home by Jack Edwards.
It didn’t take long for the second goal to arrive, Rankin with another assist as he worked a short corner routine with Brady Middleton who squeezed his shot home at the near post, and it became three on the quarter hour mark when Rankin (inevitably) dispossessed Jordan Darby 20 yards from goal and fed Weale who made no mistake.
Hinckley continued to press and scored a fourth midway through the half, Rankin again at the heart of it with a exquisite turn before finding Middleton who headed across goal for Declan Somel to nod home from close range.
Brandon Bache was called upon as he raced from his goal to block well from Ben Worthington as he bore down on goal, before play switched back to the other end and his opposite number Owen Hughes did well to push a Matt Dawson piledriver onto the woodwork.
Hinckley added a fifth just before the break, Rankin was fouled in the box and Weale converted the spot kick for his second of the afternoon to complete a memorable half for the home side.
Rankin grabbed the goal his performance deserved early in the second half, a typically precise finish at the end of yet another flowing Hinckley move down the right that ended with Weale teeing up Rankin. And the afternoon was soon to get worse for the visitors as their defence stepped up and waited for an offside flag that never came, leaving Middleton unmarked to grab his second and make it 7-0.
Hinckley kept up the momentum and Rankin completed a classy hat trick, firstly with a clinical finish from Danny Fraser’s astute pass before, with two minutes remaining, he claimed the match ball by netting after a surging run down the left from Fraser.
It only remained to see if AFC could register back to back ten goal victories, and they almost did that but keeper Hughes made a superb save on his goal line to deny Middleton.
But it was another memorable afternoon for the home fans who are being truly entertained this season and will eagerly await the draw tomorrow lunchtime.
Hinckley: Brandon Bache, Matt Dawson, Danny Fraser, Josh Clews, Calum Flanagan (Ky Green 63), Sam Walton, Lewis Rankin, Tom Weale (Harry Walker-Donovan 75), Brady Middleton, Declan Somel, Jack Edwards (Tom Armitage 66). Subs not used: Jack Beasley, Zaki Evans, Adam Barber, Isa Abraham.
Goals: Jack Edwards (2), Brady Middleton (10, 63), Tom Weale (16, 42 pen), Declan Somel (20), Lewis Rankin (55, 75, 88)
Bewdley: Owen Hughes, Charlie Foley, Craig Chirata (Hubert Zatorski 83), Jack Ricketts, Joe Tait, Jason Ndermani, Jordan Darby, Tyrese Segree (Jack Griffiths-Perry 58), Ben Worthington, Josh Harrison (Andrew Ugwueru 58), Fahme Ibrahim. Subs not used Connor Jones, Kyle De Garis