Sleights hit nine to register their biggest ever victory

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SLEIGHTS registered their biggest ever win on Saturday, bouncing back after the previous week’s drubbing at Loftus Athletic.

Player-manager Jim Howard made several changes, including dropping himself to the bench for this return to Scarborough League action, after others impressed in training.

Scott Davies, making his first start in a Sleights shirt, played well to justify his manager’s faith in him.

Howard’s men, kicking into a strong wind, started strongly and took the lead early thanks to an inch-perfect corner from Theo Smith, which landed perfectly for giant centre-half Andy Hardy to head home his maiden goal for the village side.

Sleights doubled their lead five minutes later, when utility player Mark McCarthy – this week playing at right back – drilled one from 30 yards, only for the visiting keeper to palm it into his own net.

Ten minutes later, home goalkeeper Richard Coulson felt some justice was done after having a harsh penalty given against him when contact seemed to be outside the box, as the young gloveman dusted himself off and saved the erroneous spot kick.

Soon after, Sleights were awarded a penalty of their own and Ian Smith showed Scalby how to do it with a controlled finish. Paul Hicks then ended a good move to make it 4-0 just before half-time.

Further goals were added after the break by Ian Smith, Rob Ingham and an incredible second-half hat-trick for Hicks, who played a blinder, with Howard delighted by the forward’s attitude.

The game finished 9-0 but could well have been 15, if better finishing had been applied.

Boss Howard said afterwards: “I am happy with the result and the performance of my players after bouncing back from last week’s poor showing.

“We won’t gloat after this heavy score, in fact I have stressed to the players that we will learn more collectively from getting beat heavily than winning heavily.

“However, it boosts confidence ahead of an enticing cup game against Westover.

“Although he never got on the scoresheet, James Fawcett was man of the match today, quietly going about his game, keeping possession with ease and always looking forward.

“I am very happy with his progress.”

Sleights: Coulson, McCarthy, Hardy, Graham, S Davies, Webster, I Smith, Fawcett, T Smith (Woodhouse 70), Hicks, Ingham (Cornforth 60).

Sub not used: Howard; matchball sponsor: Fletcher & Woodhouse; club sponsor: The Little Angel.

Sleights 9 Scalby Res 0