Ollerton Town hit three but it could easily have been more as they brushed Arnold Town aside to advance into the next round of the Notts Senior Cup.
Wednesday night’s tie ended 3-1 to Ollerton but the two-goal margin flattered Arnold and, if Dave Winter’s side had been more clinical in front of goal, they could have easily ran riot.
After a goalless first half, Gav King made the most of a free header to notch his fourth goal in as many games to break the deadlock on 60 minutes.
Lewis Bingham added a second minutes later and Bingham secured his brace with two minutes left as he well and truly rediscovered his shooting boots after a recent drought.
Jawanza Grant scored a last minute consolation for Arnold which spoiled proceedings slightly but Ollerton deservedly progressed.
Ollerton got into the swing of things early on and nearly took the lead inside the opening five minutes. Midfielder Ben Bowring flicked a shot against the upright after meeting a pass at the near post.
Arnold ply their trade in the East Midlands Counties League, at the same step as Ollerton’s Northern Counties East League, and both teams are in similar positions in their respective league tables.
Despite this, Ollerton continued to pile on the early pressure and Bingham saw a good effort fly wide of the post before Ashley Shannon saw a shot blocked.
Ollerton kept up their dominance and after meeting Ashley Shannon’s cross, Josh Bowkett forced Arnold ‘keeper Kieran Tonge into a smart, low save.
The men in the red of Ollerton were getting some joy from crosses into the box and Sean Dickinson saw a header go over the bar after it deflected into his path before Tonge had to be at his best again to keep out King’s headed effort.
Though Ollerton were in control, there was always that fear that the more chances they missed, the likelier it was Arnold would pinch a goal against the run of play.
Bowkett tried his luck once again, seeing a shot from the edge of the box saved well after going through a sea of bodies before Bingham missed the best chance of the first half, going clear after a defensive error but firing straight at Tonge.
The half time interval didn’t disrupt the pattern of the play and soon after the restart, Ollerton were testing Arnold once again. Bowkett fired a shot wide of the upright after being teed up by Bingham.
Ollerton were soon left wondering whether it was going to be one of those days as they came agonisingly close on two occasions. Bingham delivered a cross in which was dropped by Tonge and though it fell kindly for Bowring, the Ollerton man couldn’t get the ball out of his feet and with a defender on the line, he failed to force the ball over the line from only a yard or two out.
Tonge had his defence to thank again only a minute later. Bingham easily beat Zia Douglas and he pulled the ball back for King who fired past Tonge but not a covering defender.
Arnold will have considered themselves very fortunate not to be behind but on the hour, that luck ran out as Ollerton took the lead. Bowkett floated a free kick in from the right of the area and he found an un-marked Gav King who guided his header into the corner of the net for his seventh of the season.
Five minutes later and Ollerton had a second to put themselves in a commanding position. Dickinson slipped Lewis Bingham through and he made no mistake, hitting a powerful effort into the far corner despite a touch from Tonge.
Despite Ollerton’s grip on the game, they were given a scare as Jason Jude latched onto a loose ball but his flicked header was easily dealt with by 17-year-old Jack Dickens in the Ollerton goal.
Josh Bowkett got his first goal since returning to Ollerton in Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Glasshoughton and he looked determined to add to that but wasted a good opening by firing over after being picked out free at the far post.
Ollerton were forced to play the last 15 minutes with 10 men after Sean Dickinson went off with a nasty looking facial injury and the man advantage allowed Arnold to grow into the game, Eugene Francis and Jourdan Blair both narrowly missing the target.
Though Arnold were enjoying their best spell of the game, it was Ollerton who scored next to well and truly kill the game off. A well worked move ended with Lewis Bingham clear down the left and he smashed an effort into the top corner to secure his brace.
There hardly seemed any time left on the clock but with the last attack of the game, Jawanza Grant powered an effort past Dickens for a goal which would have frustrated the Ollerton back five who would have wanted a clean sheet after doing well up to that point in nullifying the Arnold threat.
Ollerton are without a win in nine league fixtures but it’s now two successive cup victories after last Wednesday’s 2-0 win against Retford United in the league cup.
With a difficult fixture against Yorkshire Amateur to come on Saturday, Ollerton manager Dave Winter will be hoping his side can use their cup form to their advantage in the league as they look to secure that elusive win.