King and Hatfield braces fire Clipstone to a comfortable win

Gavin King and Warren Hatfield struck a brace apiece as Clipstone were comfortable 4-1 winners over Louth in the Toolsport NCEL Division One.

Clipstone were always in control of this game, with every player putting in a shift in for the team, which was evident from only the second minute.

Keeper Ed Eley took a goal kick with pinpoint accuracy and found the head of Dave Bramwell.

He flicked on to Steve Carty, who found Bramwell again with a cut back and his shot with the right side of his boot blazed into the sidenetting, missing the post by inches.

On 10 minutes though the home side did make the breakthrough.

Gary Armstrong took a throw in midway into the Louth half and found Carl Haslam, whose quick flick set up Warren Hatfield to place his low curling shot into the bottom left corner of the goal.

That was a lead that lasted only five minutes. Louth were awarded free kick 25 yards out, taken by Matt Kennedy, who scored directly past the despairing dive from Ed Eley to level things up.

Carl Haslam was again in the thick of the action on 22 minutes when, 20 yards out, he got a shot away that was blocked and the ball bounced to Steve Carty, whose half volley on the turn found the corner of the bar with a ferocious drive.

Dave Bramwell chased down a backpass from the Louth defence, and his block swirled to the edge of the area to the feet of Warren Hatfield, who calmly brought the ball under control, took on a defender, and again placed his shot in the bottom corner of the net, to grab his and Clipstone’s second of the game.

The second half brought two early substitutions with Gavin King and Nathan Millington replacing Matt Austin and Steve Carty respectively, both suffering knocks through the first half.

Louth were making some unsightly tackles, totalling six cautions all together.

Twice Clipstone players were brought down unceremoniously just out the penalty area, but Dave Bramwell and Carl Haslam’s free kicks were blasted against the wall.

On 72 minutes Gavin King increased Clipstone’s lead with a firm header into an empty net.

Dave Bramwell was replaced by Pete Stubley, and it was Stubley’s close control and lay-off that increased Clipstone’s lead even further right on 90 minutes.

He picked up the ball wide on the right, turned past two defenders and laid off to Gavin King for his second goal of the game.