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AFC Totton 0 Hitchin Town 5

Saturday, November 16 2013

Hitchin travelled to AFC Totton knowing a positive result was essential and it proved to be a case of a job well done as  the Canaries inflicted a second successive 5-0 home defeat on their hapless hosts.
There were changes in the Hitchin line up with Robbie Burns having decided to join Cambridge City and Mark Burke acting quickly to sign Kim Forsythe from Arlesey. He made his debut playing on the left with Matt Lench playing on the right as Sam Barker and Michael Noone played the holding role in front of the back four.
Hitchin took an early lead after Alex Moth had a good chance that Tahj Bell saved and on the counter Lewis Rolfe fired in a shot that Joe McCormack spilled and Simon Martin hit home the rebound after 15 minutes. Dan Webb headed over the bar from a corner soon after before  on 18 minutes McCormack again failed to hold a Barker shot and Forsythe
 pounced for a debut goal. The keeper was looking jittery and only just held on to a Callum Donnelly shot after some juggling but he had no chance with Hitchin's third goal after 23 minutes. An exquisite free kick from Noone was brilliantly back headed into the top corner by Stuart Pearson. It was heartening to see Hitchin taking their chances after struggling to score too often this season. Bell made a good save from James Jennings and while he had little to do he was confident and positive all afternoon.
A 3-0 half time lead could have seen Hitchin relax but they remained focussed in the second half. Totton made a triple substitution on 58 minutes but to no avail as Hitchin increased their lead on the hour with Webb scoring from close range after a corner was not cleared. This was his third consecutive league goal--- not bad for a centre back! Forsythe had again come close while Bell made his best save from Luke Roberts. Jamal Lowe replaced Lench after 75 minutes for his last appearance before returning to Barnet while Michael King came on for Forsythe and  Gary Wharton replaced Martin.
Hitchin went nap 2 minutes in to injury time when Donnelly became the fifth different scorer after good work from King and Wharton to put the seal on a satisfactory days work. A 5-0 away win does not happen very often and following the 4-0 defeat of Oxhey Jets  confidence can only have been enhanced. Assistant manager Adam Parker said he thought we managed the game well and made good decisions and was pleased that in the second half we did not relax and kept a professional approach. While it was not the best football we have played it was another step in the right direction and hopefully a momentum is beginning to build.
Hitchin: Bell, Rolfe, Bickerstaff, Barker, Webb, Pearson, Lench, Donnelly, Martin, Forsythe, Noone  Subs McGeorge, King for Forsythe 80, Wharton for Martin 87, Lowe for Lench 75, Burtenshaw.
Attendance 320

Report: Roy Izzard

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