Maguire double as Spartans sparkle
Blyth Spartans 3-0 Brackley Town
Blyth produced a dominant display to go back into the play-off positions with a thoroughly deserved performance against a Brackley side with the best defence in the league.
Two goals from Dan Maguire and one from Jarrett Rivers secured the victory.
It took the Spartans only three minutes to take the lead. The ever industrious Rivers did well down the right for the hosts and his persistence won a corner. The corner was taken short to Dale Hopson who smashed the ball through the six yard box and Maguire was able to deftly backheel home to the delight of the fans in the Lennon Properties stand.
The lead was doubled when Jarrett Rivers was able to stab home on six minutes. Robbie Dale took a quick throw on the left and found Dale Hopson, the midfielder flicked the ball to Dan Maguire, who fired the ball across goal and Rivers was able to get in front of the static defence to prod home.
It took the visitors the best part of a quarter of an hour to fashion an opening and when it did came the way of Lee Ndlovu. The striker pinched the ball off his own teammate and smashed one from the corner of the 18 yard box but the effort was well off target.
Adam Walker then fired over from 25 yards out for Brackley, before goalkeeper Peter Jameson was finally called into action on 37 minutes when he saved well from Ndlovu.
Almost immediately, on the counter attack, afantastic diagonal ball from the on-loan Gateshead midfielder, Kieran Green, picked out the run of Hopson.
It was a two on one with Hopson and Maguire advancing on goal, Hopson took the shot on but saw his effort strike the woodwork only to fall nicely for Maguire, who hesitated before slotting home.
The Saints began the second half in the ascendency and were unlucky to not pull a goal back through James Armson, whilst Gareth Dean headed straight at Jameson.
Ndlovu stung the fingertips of Jameson before Maguire had the chance to wrap up his hat-trick on 70 minutes when he danced into the box but sliced his shot over the bar.
Blyth went on the see out the match comfortably, Rivers claiming for a late penalty when he claimed he was pushed in the box.