Hucknall Town 10-2 Borrowash Victoria (United Counties League Division One) 08.01.22
A brilliant show of scoring from Craig Westcarr helped Hucknall secure their biggest win in over 2 years, as they defeated Borrowash 10-2 on Saturday afternoon.
The Yellows came into the game against the leagues bottom side off the back of a three-game winning streak, and having been undefeated in their last five overall. There was just one change from the side that beat Gedling 3-1 last time out, as Aaron Short returned to the side in place of Cayne Maxwell.
It wasn’t to be a simple start for Hucknall, however, as a misplaced pass allowed Nathan Bennett to race through and beat Jake Pearson one-on-one.
The Town ‘keeper went down injured as the goal played out, getting his leg caught in the muddy playing surface, and unfortunately had to be helped off the pitch.
Louis Kinnerley came on to replace him, donning his goalie gloves for the second time this week following his stint in net against Gedling last time out.
There was to be no revenge for the side that lost to Hucknall 4-0 at home the last time they faced off, as a fantastic ball over the top from Courtney Bartley was steered home by Westcarr for the equaliser with 20 minutes gone.
Just two minutes later, Aaron Lamb sped in behind the Borrowash back-line before being brought down by Luke Whiting, which allowed Westcarr to step up and stroke home his second of the game, and his 25th of the season.
Another three minutes is all it took for Lamb to turn from creator to finisher, as he latched onto a clipped ball over the top from Westcarr to smash home at the near post coolly.
David Leak was next to get in on the act, meeting Joe Ashurst’s well-whipped corner with a bullet header which left Tom Smith helpless in the visitor’s net.
Westcarr managed to make it a treble for himself with four minutes left in the half, as another corner from Ashurst was headed goal-wards, only for the striker to smash home from close range.
The second half gave no reprieve for Borrowash, as Westcarr soon added a fourth for himself and a sixth for Hucknall, rifling home clinically from 12 yards as Borrowash started to collapse.
Substitute Grant Ryan entered the fray right on the hour mark, and got straight in on the action to smash home in the box after just three minutes of playing.
The striker could’ve had a second a moment later, as he raced through on goal to meet another fantastic Westcarr ball, but just dragged his shot wide.
It wasn’t to matter, however, as Westcarr soon arrowed home an effort from barely inside the box just one minute later to add an eighth.
Substitute Cayne Maxwell, who had replaced Lamb just a few minutes before Ryan’s introduction, wasn’t to go without leaving his mark, as he smashed home a five-minute brace with ten minutes remaining to take the game to double digits.
There was still time for an impressive consolation from the visitors, who despite the heavy scoreline never stopped pushing, to their credit. They won the ball back in their own half and passed their way up the pitch, before squaring it across the box to be slotted home past Kinnerley.
It was the first time Hucknall had scored 10 in a game since defeating Shirebrook Town by the same scoreline in November 2019, and it helped the team consolidate their position in the play-off spots.
Speaking after the game, manager Andy Graves said: “We didn’t start particularly well, that’s true. I know with the pitch we had to get used to the passing, but we were under hitting them. Before they scored, I counted 11 misplaced passes, which wasn’t good enough, and then the twelfth one caught us out.
“Unfortunately, Jake [Pearson] got injured, his foot got stuck in the mud and that obviously didn’t help him when he was trying to save it. He’s gone to hospital now so hopefully he’s not too bad.
“After that we started playing like we can do, we started to pass the ball around and improved and the goals came. And fair play to them because they didn’t stop, they carried on trying to make it difficult for us. We did say at half-time, “let’s be ruthless”. At Holwell we were in a very good position and took our foot off the gas. We said today, come end of the season goals will be needed, so let’s be ruthless and I think we were.”
Speaking on Westcarr’s performance (with the man himself looking on), he said: “Craig got five, but he could’ve had nine! Bit disappointed! No but Westcarr is just class, people questioned why I brought him to the club, an ex-pro he’ll just be there few games then he’ll be off to the highest bidder, he’s not been like that at all.
“His work-rate improves every game. I mean his work-rate on that pitch! It’s a come-down from where he has been playing but it didn’t phase him, he worked hard for the team.
Moving on to discuss Grant Ryan getting back amongst the goals, Graves said: “The biggest thing today for me was getting Grant [a goal]. You know, he’s been suffering, he had the red card and then he had COVID, and he does struggle with asthma so I think it probably affected him more than anyone else who’s had it lately, so I was really happy for him to get his goal because that will give him a real lift.”
*Article provided by Louis Wheeldon (Football Correspondent).
*Main image @HucknallTownFC Craig Westcarr scores from the spot.