Clipstone made the best possible start to 2015 with a comprehensive 5-0 home derby win over neighbours Teversal to keep up their NCEL Division One title chase.
It kept Chris Millington’s men three points behind leaders AFC Emley with a game in hand.
To compound their misery, Teversal ended up with 10 men after Bradley Cox was dismissed for two bookable offences with less than an hour played.
It was the visitors who created the first chance of the game in the second minute as Greg Tobin fired a 20-yard shot straight at Clipstone keeper Nick Siddons.
Siddons was back in the side for the first time since he was injured against Shirebrook Town at the back end of November.
However, that was one of only three Teversal attempts at goal in the whole first half.
Clipstone were very quickly in control of this game and towards the end of the eighth minute of play Matty Ord broke down the left side of the Teversal half.
He was held up by Bradley Cox and, as Ord made a move to get the ball into the mix, Cox’s outstretched leg brought down the Clipstone wide man and referee Mr Guest had no qualms whatsoever in pointing to the spot, and show the defender the game’s first caution with Teversal protesting.
Rob Paling then stepped up to convert the penalty and give the hosts a 1-0 lead.
Three minutes later Teversal were making inroads down Clipstone’s right flank when a late challenge from Paling brought the referee’s notebook out again.
The resulting free kick, taken by Tobin, was poor and Siddons was very grateful to see the ball drift five yard wide of his goal.
A midfield battle ensued with stray passes and poorly-timed challenges from both sides, but Clipstone gradually enjoyed the better of things and piled pressure on the Teversal defenders.
On 26 minutes Dan Wood chased a flick-on from Jamie Smith with the Teversal players standing still, leaving keeper Simon Dye to collect the free ball.
But he was not aware of the situation until it was too late and Wood clipped the ball over the onrushing keeper, the ball bouncing and hitting the underside of the bar, rebounding just back into play. With two defenders running back, they collected the ball and cleared the danger.
Wood and Ord alongside Jamie Brown caused the Teversal back four headaches all afternoon and it was no surprise when Clipstone did double their lead on 31 minutes.
A nice passing move from the midfield involving five players eventually found Wood 22 yards out who sent in a speculative effort through three Teversal defenders towards the far corner of goal. Somehow the Teversal keeper got his feet all muddled up and his despairing dive was not enough to stop the ball reaching the back of the net.
Brown ran onto a Smith flick on from a Siddons clearance, went past two defenders and fired a shot beyond the visiting keeper, but sliced it just a yard wide as the home side came close again.
On 43 minutes Siddons was made to work in the Clipstone goal for only the second time of the half as Aiden Harris sent a screamer in at goal with the keeper tipping over for a corner.
Teversal went at the Clipstone defence in the early exchanges of the second half, but the back four never looked in any danger of relinquishing their clean sheet.
On 57 minutes Cox ventured just inside the Clipstone area and fell over as if he had been shot. He was not fooling the referee, though, as he very quickly gave the free kick to Clipstone and showed Cox his second caution of the afternoon which enabled him to have first use of the showers after the referee also shown him a red card.
On 62 minutes Ryan Damms made his second substitute appearance for the Cobras as he replaced Brown.
Just two minutes later Clipstone were three goals to the good. Damms’ movement took two defenders out of the mix and the ball fell nicely to Smith on the left edge of the area. He danced and pirouetted past three defenders and placed the ball into the corner of goal.
The timing of the Clipstone substitutions was very profound in the second half.
On 70 minutes Callum Mawby replaced Wood and within two minutes Smith had bagged his brace.
Again Damms had an input in things. He played a one-two with Mawby and flicked the ball onto Smith, who spun and shot underneath the keeper and the ball trickled over the line.
On 81 minutes Mawby picked up a pass from Brandan Shaw and nutmegged his defender and laid the ball off to Damms on the edge of the area. Spotting the keeper off his line, he chipped the ball just under the bar, giving the keeper no chance and putting the final score beyond doubt.
The clean sheet was also a tribute to Ash Rawson and Steve Carty, the centre midfield pair hustling and tackling through out the whole 90 minutes.
CLIPSTONE: Siddons, Paling, Shaw, Rawson, Colley (Carrig 77), Hill, Wood (Mawby 70), Carty, Smith, Brown (Damms 62), Ord. Subs not used: Naylor, Owen.
TEVERSAL: Dye, Hopes, Vincent, Staniforth, McGurk (Short 77), Cox, Tobin (Robinson 68), Atkins, Harris, Cockerill, Dawson (Dickinson 61). Subs not used: Stokes, Langley.
REFEREE: Danny Guest of South Yorkshire. ATTENDANCE: 126.