Lancaster City 4-1 Radcliffe Borough
The Dolly Blues found their best attacking form on Saturday as they swept aside struggling Radcliffe Borough at Giant Axe.
In a game that was almost completely dominated by the hosts from the first whistle, a second-half blitz emphatically wrapped up the points on a day when Phil Brown’s side could have scored closer to double figures.
In-form midfielder Craig Carney, City’s star man on the day, opened the scoring after 20 minutes with his fantastic control and volley from the edge of the box finding the top-left corner.
Ryan Winder almost doubled City’s lead but for the linesman’s flag ruling out his close-range strike before half-time after yet more great attacking play from Lancaster.
The second half began in the spring sunshine with the Dolly Blues on the front foot from the off.
Just five minutes after the restart Lancaster doubled their lead. Throwing players into the box, the ball pinballed around after two blocked efforts before falling to Zach Clark who turned and fired past ‘keeper Chris Cheetham into the bottom-left corner.
Winder scored the pick of the goals to make it three, firing Jacob Davis’ cross low past Cheetham on the penalty spot.
Bobby Langford then scored his second goal in a City shirt after being set clean through by Tom Kilifin’s flick to smash home from 10 yards.
Cheetham was being offered little protection from the visitors whose heads were down as Brown’s side played out the final quarter of an hour like a training match.
The lack of intensity played against the Dollies as Radcliffe scored their consolation in the final seconds of added time, much to the fury of goalkeeper Mike Hale. Sam McMahon headed home a corner far too easily at the back-post to no celebration, bringing the final score to 4-1.
The victory means the Dolly Blues are seventh in the table and five points shy of the play-off places.
Brown’s side need favours from elsewhere but will look to keep up the pressure on the top five during a double header over Easter weekend.
Champions elect Warrington Town visit Giant Axe on Saturday before the Blues head to Kendal Town for an Easter Monday derby.