St Athan 5-1 Dinas Powys Athletic
Man of the match Josh Morgan fired an impressive hat trick as Saints quality in front of goal shone through in a comfortable win on a wet Saturday afternoon in the Vale of Glamorgan Premier DIvision.
In form Leigh Lewis and stand in skipper James Austin added the others as Saints kept in touch with the early leaders.
After a hard fought 1-0 victory last week, it was Tony Charles who was on international duty this week with the more than capable Richie Humphreys returning to the starting eleven, Jamie Robinson was brought in to full back in place of Josh Harfoot who was missing. Apart from those changes the 11 was the same as last week with Austin continuing as captain.
Saints started the brighter and Leigh Lewis looked to add to his recent goals, the reborn winger saw a free kick well saved by the Dinas Keeper.
St Athan were soon in front, Josh Morgan picked up the ball on the left of the area, his feet were too quick for the defender and created an opportunity which he took with aplomb. Finishing tremendously right footed across the keeper.
Dinas, however, did not lay down for their hosts and were soon chasing a leveller and came close when a free kick clipped the bar.
Saints almost doubled their lead as Morgan rose like a possessed salmon to flick on to Lewis, who saw his effort firmly palmed behind by the keeper.
Lewis soon as his goal, his seventh in as many games. Morgan intercepted a wayward pass and played in Lewis who calmly slotted past the oncoming keeper.
The home side were in the ascendancy and after having two penalty appeals turned down, Austin saw a left footed drive saved.
Athletic really should have got back into the game, as they got in behind the home defence and the pull back was blazed high wide and not so handsome.
St Athan took that let off as their cue to step it up and all but sealed the points just before half time. Deon Garrison in goal threw the ball out to Karl Steel, his through ball saw Morgan brought down but advantage was played as Morgan leapt up to race away and square the ball to Austin, who composed himself under pressure from the defender to slot the ball in.
Saints in full control going in at the break.
The second period was a tussle to begin with, not many clear cut chances created by either side.
Garrison held a couple of long range efforts well before Steel saw a strike wide.
Dinas looked for some way into the game but found the home defence in excellent form with Mark Drysdale impervious at centre half alongside Humphreys and Brad Young as well as Robinson and then Jon Ball, coming off the bench.
Another substitute looked to make an impact as Tony Pugh saw an effort narrowly off target, then moments later Austin saw two efforts well blocked.
Jonathan Ashton continued to form a good understanding with Austin and Joe Laing in midfield producing some tremendous passes and hard work. And it was the midfield that started a move that led to the fourth.
Pugh was played in on the right hand side, he cut inside only to be brought down and a penalty was awarded. Morgan stepped up and calmly converted.
Saints were managing the game very well and some neat football saw Lewis and Morgan combine to release Morgan to expertly finish and notch his second hat trick of the season and eighth goal.
Dinas to their credit kept looking to get forward and grabbed a consolation as a rare error by St Athan was leapt on and the Dinas forward finished well.
Saints with a good performance and always looked in control of the game. The win keeps St Athan six points behind unbeaten Vale United with a game in hand.
Next week it’s a break from league action as the SWFA Intermediate Cup takes centre stage. St Athan travel to Tongwynlais in what should be a tough test.
St Athan: Garrison, Robinson, Young, Drysdale, Humphreys, Ashton, Laing, Austin, Lewis, Steel, Morgan. Subs – Ball, Pugh.
We’d like to thank those who came out to support us and our sponsors, Owens Motor Services, Llandow, Diving & Marine Engineering, Green Future Landscaping, Llantwit Valet & Car Wash and The Four Bells in St Athan.