Derbyshire Senior Cup
Alfreton Town 6
South Normanton Ath. 1
Both Nathan Arnold and Paul Clayton claimed hat-tricks as South Normanton Athletic were swept aside at last Wednesday.
And Clayton also went on to hit both posts, as well as having a brace disallowed for offside and for good measure, the irrepressible striker missed the easiest of chances from two yards.
To their credit the Shiners began well and took a third minute lead when keeper Ross Turner was adjudged to have impeded Adam Nicholls, the South Normanton skipper dispatching a well-taken penalty straight down the middle.
But in reality that was just about the sum total of their attacking force, the visitors not gaining their first corner until the 77th minute, by which time Alfreton had racked up 17.
Clayton had equalised by the seventh minute when he turned an Ian Ross free-kick past keeper David O’Hare from eight yards, and Aden Flint went desperately close six minutes later with a towering header from a Chris Hall pass.
Anthony Wilson’s 14th minute flick-on led to Clayton firing just beyond the back post, then following a quiet spell up popped Arnold to steer home a Ross corner from 12 yards to give Alfreton a 38th minute lead.
Two minutes before the break O’Hare had to turn behind a low drive from Ross, then from the restart Clayton headed over from Wilson’s cross and Wilson headed over from a Ross delivery.
Eight minutes into the second half Chris Hall scampered to the by-line before crossing to the far post where Clayton had the easiest of tasks to head the Reds 3-1 ahead unmarked, then six minutes later an inswinging corner from Ross had to be punched away desperately by the keeper.
Arnold’s low drive from a Clayton pass was turned behind by O’Hare on the hour then on 74 minutes Clayton smashed a 22 yarder against the foot of the post.
The fourth goal marked Clayton’s treble in the 75th minute with a header from eight yards from Josh Law’s corner, then three minutes later Clayton ran through to be denied by the other post.
A free-kick by Nicholls had to be dealt with professionally by Turner in the 80th minute, then in a speedy counter-attack Clayton missed from close range from Connor Franklin’s cross.
Arnold found himself one-on-one with the keeper to side-step O’Hare and score with ease in the 85th minute, then he rounded off a deserved hat-trick two minutes later with a similar goal after running on to Turner’s clearance.
The action concluded with Adam Taylor blocking a Clayton shot on the line in the 89th minute.
ALFRETON TOWN: 1 Ross Turner, 2 Jordan Hall (Josh Law 63), 3 Connor Franklin, 4 Aden Flint (Paul Lister 79), 5 Darren Stride, 6 Ian Ross, 7 Dan Dillon, 8 Chris Hall, 9 Paul Clayton, 10 Anthony Wilson (Anthony Howell 63), 11 Nathan Arnold.
Substitutes not used: Laurie Wilson, Paddy Gamble.
SOUTH NORMANTON ATHLETIC: 1 David O’Hare, 2 Adam Taylor, 3 Chris Green, 4 Daniel Riley (Matt Phillips, 73), 5 Daniel Henshaw, 6 Grant Hackett, 7 Adam Nicholls (c), 8 Jay Beecher, 9 Andy White, 10 Kyle Wadsworth (Gerard Moran, 63), 11 Ben Summers (Cory Bowler, h/t).
Substitutes not used: James Baker, Adam Moss.
REFEREE: Nigel Smith of Chesterfield
ATT: 329. HALF-TIME: 2-1.
GOALS: Alfreton Town - Paul Clayton (8, 53, 75), Nathan Arnold (38, 85, 87). South Normanton Athetic - Adam Nicholls (3, penalty).
REDS MAN OF THE MATCH: Paul Clayton.
STAR SHINER: Daniel Henshaw.