TOWN’S first string may be finding goals a little hard to come by, but Mick Docherty’s reserves are relishing a goal fest!
A brace by Keigan Parker with Luke Beckett, Daniel Broadbent, Tom Denton and Robbie Williams also on target, ensured a hardy crowd of 91 had plenty to applaud and keep hands warm as the infamous ‘horizontal’ rain poured at AFC Emley’s Welfare Ground during a 6-3 victory against Rotherham United reserves.
It was Town reserves’ first foray away from the Galpharm and the amazing scoreline maintained their 100% record with a fourth win in the totesport.com Central League East Division, which was watched by Stan Ternant and former Town manager Peter Jackson.
Town had beaten Leeds 3-2 at Elland Road before notching great Galpharm victories over Scunthorpe (3-1) and Hartlepool (3-0).
But, when the final whistle blew, it was hard to believe that Rotherham had the best of the first half with Ryan Taylor proving a real menace.
Town’s Spencer Harris skewed a clearance off Omar Garcia’s legs and it fell kindly for the Rotherham striker to slot it past goalkeeper Simon Eastwood (who was making his first start) with ease on seven minutes.
Taylor had chances to increase the visitors’ lead along with former Town player Mark Hudson, whose shot flew behind the Town defence and just wide of the far post on 24 minutes.
Both sets of players struggled to adjust to the strong, swirling wind, but Parker and Town academy product Luke Durham were lively and industrious.
Parker bagged an equaliser on 25 minutes, drilling a low well-placed shot past keeper Steve Cann.
Then in the second half – cue goal fest!
And pass the calculator please!
Just 50 seconds had gone when Town won a corner taken by Williams and it was a wicked inswinger which flew in off a defender and the keeper with Beckett in the way. He was not slow in claiming the goal.
Parker pounced on 53 with another assured low-struck finish to make it 3-1 before homegrown teenage 6ft 5in striker Tom Denton prompted more big cheers when he replaced Beckett on 58.
Relentless Town made it 4-1 when Broadbent rifled a beauty past the keeper which went in off the far post.
Rotherham pulled a goal back with an exquisite free-kick by Garcia which left Eastwood rooted on 69 before Shepley-based Denton, 19, sparked jubilation from fans on 77 when he made it 5-2 with a close-range poke after a superb run down the left by substitute Lewis Nightingale.
And there was still more!
Williams scored with a long-range daisy-cutter on the volley that left Cann with no chance as he dived to his left.
And deep into stoppage time at the end of the match, Rotherham’s Marc Joseph dinked a late goal over Eastwood which beat substitute Leigh Franks on the line.
Town – Eastwood, Holdsworth, Williams, Collins, T Clarke, Harris (Franks, 74mins), Parker, Berrett, Beckett (Denton 58 mins), Broadbent, Durham (Nightingale, 74mins). Subs: Smithies, Codman.