Rushden & Diamonds 8 Daventry United 0

Northants FA Hillier Senior Cup Round 2

Four goals in the opening 21 minutes put this Hillier Senior Cup tie beyond the reach of visiting UCL side Daventry United. Max York opened the scoring with a blistering 30 yard drive after just 7 minutes. Three goals in a six minute period thanks to an own goal, Ryan Charles and Lewwis Spence put Diamonds in the driving seat as the Motormen struggled to stem the onslaught. Spence added a further two goals in the second half to secure his hat-trick, with another own goal and a second for Ryan Charles adding to the tally.

Paul Driver named five debutants in the starting eleven, with first appearances for Lance Key in goal, Joe Keehan and Max York in midfield, plus youth team players Jake Gillingwater and Liam Read. The 4-4-2 formation saw a back four of Kurt Robinson, Michael Corcoran (in his first game back after injury), Gillingwater and Justin Miller. Read partnered Ryan Charles up front.

The opening chance of the first half fell to the visitors, but Darran Frost’s first touch let him down and the ball ran away into veteran keeper Lance Key’s hands. However, it wasn’t long before Diamonds stamped their authority on the game. After just 7 minutes, Liam Read crossed from the right into Ryan Charles. Although Charles was unable to direct a shot on goal, the ball came back out to Max York who fired home a 30 yard drive.

Daventry were unable to deal with the threat of Lewwis Spence and Dominic Green as they caused all sorts of problems on the wings. Green laid on another chance for Max York, his shot being blocked, before Justin Miller headed over from Green’s corner. Will Briscoe did manage to get the ball in the net for the visitors, but the goal was ruled out for offside.

Diamonds second goal came on 15 minutes as Green’s corner was diverted in at the near post by Duncan Harris as Corcoran and Charles both challenged for the ball.

There was no let up as Diamonds stayed focused and added a further two goals in quick succession. After Liam Read had gone narrowly wide with a volley, Spence crossed for Ryan Charles to shoot past keeper Lee Farrow, before a long throw-in from Miller was headed home by Lewwis Spence.

Lance Key was largely a spectator, although he made an excellent save on 28 minutes, saving Will Briscoe’s shot from the edge of the area. The 42 year old keeper had become the second oldest player to make an appearance for Diamonds, with only Brian Talbot beating him for age. Daventry tried to launch further attacks, but failed to beat the offside trap on the few occasions they got forward.

On 40 minutes, Diamonds brought on 17 year old Aaron King – returning after some 16 months with Liverpool’s Academy. He replaced the injured Jake Gillingwater, with Diamonds going to three at the back and King going into central/right midfield. As the half drew to a close, Spence had two chances to increase the lead, firing over the bar, before a failed attempt to lob the keeper.

Half-time: Diamonds 4 Daventry United 0

Diamonds went further ahead with a fifth goal just 40 seconds after the restart. Max York brought ball forward and appeared to be fouled, but the ball broke to Green. After his shot was initially blocked, it was left to Lewwis Spence to fire in his second from the edge of the area.

Charles and Green both came close before a rare chance for United saw Jon Crockett head just wide. Spence was looking dangerous every time he went forward and he just failed to beat the keeper with a delicate chip. Diamonds made a couple of changes, with debuts for youth team members Callum Earls and Lewis Wilson, replacing Robinson and Read. It looked only a matter of time before Diamonds went further ahead, and on 79 minutes, Callum Earls cross from the left was deflected past the hapless keeper by Andy McKinley.

Just four minutes later, Lewwis Spence finally got his deserved hat-trick, heading in Miller’s cross for number seven. Diamonds biggest win in this competition was 16 years ago when they beat Desborough 8-0 and right on the stroke of full time, the fiesta was completed when Lewis Wilson centred the ball from the left to find Ryan Charles in space to fire home from the edge of the area.

Full-time: Diamonds 8 Daventry United 0

The comprehensive win puts Diamonds into the Quarter Finals of the competition, although the draw is not expected to be made until early November, when the remaining Round 2 ties have been resolved.


Rushden & Diamonds: Lance Key, Justin Miller, Kurt Robinson (Callum Earls 67), Joe Keehan, Jake Gillingwater (Aaron King 40), Michael Corcoran (c), Dominic Green, Max York, Ryan Charles, Liam Read (Lewis Wilson 75), Lewwis Spence.

Subs not used: Kyle Swailes, Elliot Dent.

Daventry United: Lee Farrow, Ross Irvine, Timmy Orford (Henry Spears 67), Andy McKinlay, Duncan Harris, Nick Bailee, Johnathan Crockett (Ben James 58), Ian Waldock (c), Darran Frost, Will Briscoe (Lee Vince 58), Jamie Coleman.

Subs not used: Tommy Waldock

Goals: Max York 7 (1-0), Duncan Harris og 15 (2-0), Ryan Charles 17 (3-0), Lewwis Spence 21 (4-0), Lewwis Spence 46 (5-0), Andy McKinley og 79 (6-0), Lewwis Spence 83 (7-0), Ryan Charles 90 (8-0).

Referee: Mr Sean Feerick (Peterborough)

Attendance: 101.


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