Blue Square Bet North
Alfreton Town 6
Corby Town 0
Alfreton Town made it four wins from four games since their setback at AFC Telford United last month, completely overwhelming a poor Corby Town side at the Impact Arena last Saturday to equal their best Blue Square Bet North victory.
The quality of the goals caught the eye, particularly the third from Daryl Clare and the finale from Nathan Arnold, as the Reds strengthened their bid for the title without really needing to find top gear.
Just 90 seconds had ticked by when Anthony Howell overran the ball from Clare’s astute cross, then at the other end in the twelfth minute Adam Webster headed over from a Jordan Fitzpatrick corner.
Josh Law then fired over from 30 yards before Chris Mackenzie comfortably held a Philip Gulliver header in the 26th minute to deny his former team-mates.
Two minutes later Clare turned and rifled over from 12 yards from a Law corner, but Alfreton at last edged ahead with 35 minutes lapsed when Matt Wilson scooped in a half volley from the edge of the area after Ian Ross had carved an opening on the right.
Three minutes later and the second goal was added in typical style by Liam Hearn, slotting the ball past keeper Aaron Butcher from six yards after Ross had sent him through following an inspired pass from Anton Brown.
The first half ended with Butcher clutching Clare’s low angled drive at the second attempt after a return pass had been taken from Brown, while in response Fitzpatrick sent a scorching free-kick just wide of the target.
Six minutes after the break Clare stunned the crowd with an extraordinary first-time left-footed lob from fully 40 yards after spotting Butcher off his line, the goal leaving reporters searching for an adequate description - surely though had Radio Five been covering the game then Stuart Hall would have found several suitable superlatives.
It was 4-0 after 67 minutes when Hearn scored his 20th goal of the season by firing home through the legs of Butcher from six yards after taking a Paul Clayton pass.
Moments later Wilson headed wide from Arnold’s cross after a neat move initiated by Theo Streete and continued down the left by Clayton and Ross.
Stephen Diggin spearheaded a rare Corby attack that saw Mackenzie save his sharp angled drive, but the fifth goal duly arrived for Alfreton in the 78th minute when Clayton turned and hammered high into the net from six yards after being teed up by Arnold.
Five minutes later the second candidate of the afternoon for “Goal of the Season” saw Arnold take a return pass from Jake Moult from a left-wing corner, before cutting in and blasting home an unstoppable shot from 18 yards into the far top corner.
The Steelmen then had two good chances for a consolation but Stephen Towers fired weakly at Mackenzie with three minutes remaining, then the same player sliced his volley wide from 12 yards a minute later.
In added time Arnold’s deep cross from the left led to a cheeky stooping header from Clayton just evading the bar, then another effort from Arnold spun high off defender Tommy Jaszczun with Streete heading over from close range at the far post.
Alfreton Town : 1. Chris Mackenzie, 2. Josh Law, 3. Connor Franklin, 4. Theo Streete (c), 5. Scott Garner, 6. Matt Wilson, 7. Ian Ross (Jake Moult 74), 8.Anton Brown (Nathan Arnold 57), 9 Daryl Clare (Paul Clayton 63), 10 Liam Hearn, 11 Anthony Howell.
Substitutes not used: Jordan Hall, Laurie Wilson
Corby Town : 1 Aaron Butcher, 2 Joe Wilcox, 3 Tommy Jaszczun, 4 Liam Dolman, 5 Philip Gulliver (c), 6 Jordan Fitzpatrick, 7 Glenn Walker (Liam Ruddick 70), 8 Stephen Towers, 9 Adam Webster, 10 Stephen Diggin, 11 Netan Sansara (Troy Johnson 63).
Substitute not used: 18 Jack Drury (only four named).
Referee: Mr D Plowright of Clipstone
Goals: Alfreton Town - Matt Wilson (35), Liam Hearn (38 and 67), Daryl Clare (51), Paul Clayton (78), Nathan Arnold (83).
Reds man of the match: Daryl Clare.