HERTS SENIOR COUNTY LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION
Eagles battered a poor Hinton side currently anchored at the bottom of the league table. Hinton managed to stem the tide of relentless Eagles attacks until the second half, then collapsed after going down to 10 men, with central midfielder Joe Humphries helping himself to a hat trick of goals.
Eagles could have been 2 goals ahead in the first 5 minutes when Sam Gittings lost his footing on the slippery surface and just failed to convert a cross at the far post from a couple of yards, and then he hit the base of the post from an acute angle after outpacing a static defence.
Charlie Thake headed a great chance over the Hinton cross bar from a direct free kick by Carl Williams, and a great run from Shane Carthy from inside his own half did not result in the goal it deserved when Gittings failed to steer the ball into the net from close range. After 35 minutes Eagles finally got the all important first goal when Josh Coley let fly from 20 yards and the ball flew into the back of the Hinton net. Thake was then put clear of the Hinton defence who were vainly appealing for offside, but instead of trying to take the ball round the keeper he attempted a chip over the keepers head from the edge of the penalty area and the ball cleared the crossbar rather than dropping into an empty net.
Eagles soon scored a second goal after half time when Thake pushed home a cross from Williams at the far post. Within minutes it was 3-0 when Carthy made a strong run down the left and crossed the ball for an unmarked Gittings to head home from 6 yards. Carthy was soon in action again when his goal bound shot was somehow hacked off the goal line by the keeper as it tricked towards the net, but Carthy then dribbled through the Hinton rearguard and placed the ball well wide of the keeper for the fourth goal.
Hinton went down to 10 men following a red card for a bad challenge, and Eagles were able to rest strikers Thake and Gittings and bring on their subs. Hinton resistance collapsed as Joe Humphries scored from near the penalty spot then headed home a Williams free kick. He had a couple more chances before completing his hat trick within 10 minutes after a corner was not cleared and his first shot was charged down.
Eagles then swarmed over a demoralised Hinton rear guard. Williams beat the offside trap but tried to go round the keeper who managed to block the ball and deflect it wide of goal. Coley then attempted to take the ball round the keeper but was forced wide. He crossed the ball back into the centre of the goal area and sub Charlie Black easily netted from close range. Carthy completed the Eagles scoring after another strong run through a weak Hinton defence, before Hinton managed to grab a consolation goal almost at full time from a quick free kick into the top corner of the net with Eagles defenders still organising a defensive wall.