Bostik League South – 26/12/2017
Cray Wanderers 7
Freiter 7, Rhule 13, 49, Parker 42, 51,
Dent 83, Dawson 90
Cray Wanderers continued their fine league form with a devastating attacking display against Shoreham at Hayes Lane. The Wands made it 17 unbeaten in the league and remain in 2nd place in the Bostik South and were in no mood to be charitable this Christmas as two goals in the opening quarter of an hour settled any nerves and Cray dominated from there on in to notch their second 7-0 win in the last few weeks.
The Wands opened the scoring in the 7th minute when Michael Freiter fired home from Brandon Scott’s cross to continue his excellent form of recent weeks.
Another player in good form is Aaron Rhule and he scored the second after 13 minutes when he got on the end of Freiter’s cross although keeper James Broadbent claimed the ball but the ball was adjudged to be over the line.
Substitute Freddie Parker prodded home another Freiter assist three minutes before the break to all but certainly seal the game.
The second half saw Cray score twice in two minutes as first in the 49th minute, Rhule scored his second of the game with fine mazy run into the area and shot. Then 90 seconds later, Parker scored his second when he nodded home Rhule’s inviting left wing cross.
Cray made it six seven minutes from time when Karl Dent made his first appearance off the bench since the Moneyfields cup tie with a superb sixth goal rifled home from the right of the penalty area. Finally, Lea Dawson got on the end of a deflected cross to head the ball into the net.
There was two changes to the side which drew at Molesey on Saturday with Zak Henry coming in for Dean Carpenter and Aaron Rhule for Jerome Federico.
Shoreham had yet to register a point away from home this season but Cray couldn’t take them for granted and Cray set about the task in a very professional manner.
After a quiet start to the game, it burst into life in the 7th minute when Cray took the lead with their first real promising attack of note. The goal was patiently set up by a run forward by Ben Mundele who found Michael Freiter who in turn swept the ball out to Brandon Scott down the right. Scott played a short cross into Freiter on the edge of the six yard box who turned Odofin O’Niel to fire a shot into the top right hand corner of the net for his 7th goal of the season.
Shoreham though had a good chance to make it 1-1 two minutes later when a ball forward into the area found Steve Herbert who hit a low cross shot which was well blocked by Nick Blue and the loose ball fell to George Gaskin who fired the ball back into Blue’s arms.
Cray though scored a second goal in the 13th minute which again was well worked. Nick Blue’s long kick forward found Scott down the right who took on Alfie Proto-Gates, exchanged passes with Mundele and then Freiter picking up the ball by the right touchline put over a cross to the far post where Aaron Rhule rose to head the ball towards goal and Broadbent made a save but could only push the ball over the line and was adjudged to be a goal.
Cray were now in full control and Freiter who was playing superbly saw a shot from 30 yards go well over the top.
The only down side of the afternoon for Cray was the sight of Michael Power leaving the field after just 19 minutes with what looks like a hamstring injury to be replaced by Freddie Parker.
In the 21st minute Cray were unlucky not to score a third when Freiter’s lofted ball into the area found Rhule who hit a superb first time shot which came back off the left post.
Then from a right wing corner the ball eventually came to Jay Leader who set up Scott who fired wide of goal from 20 yards. From another right wing corner from Freiter the ball came to Dawson but his header was blocked in the area.
This was followed in the 34th minute from a free kick down the left, Freiter’s ball into the box was flicked on to Mitchell Nelson who swung over a cross which was met by Jay Leader but directed his header over the bar. Then Freiter fired wide of goal from Rhule’s deflected cross and from another corner, eventually the ball came to Barney Williams who drove a shot which was well claimed by Broadbent.
Scott then fired in a shot from the edge of the area saved by Broadbent but Shoreham almost grabbed a lifeline when Proto-Gates down the left put a dangerous cross into the area which Blue had to push away and the ball was cleared.
A third goal was on the cards and it came three minutes before half time when Parker found Rhule down the left who put the ball into the box which missed Freiter but was picked up by Parker who stabbed the ball into the net from five yards.
Half Time: 3-0
Cray started the second half the way they ended the first and almost scored within a couple of minutes when Scott put Parker through who took the ball round Broadbent but pulled his shot across goal and was put behind for a corner. From the corner, Freiter’s ball into the
area was headed wide by Dawson.
In the 49th minute, Cray scored a fourth goal which was superbly taken by Rhule after being found by Parker’s neat pass, took on Jack Whitmore and found space to clinically place the ball into the net from 8 yards.
Then in the 51st minute, Cray scored again after a quite superb cross down the left by Rhule into the heart of the penalty box found Parker who got to the ball in front of O’Niel to glance a header into the net.
Cray were now playing some quite excellent football and Mitchell Nelson let fly with a great shot from 30 yards which hit the top of the cross bar and over. This was followed by a strong run forward from midfield by Scott which ended with a shot that was saved by Broadbent.
The Wands then hit the woodwork for the third time of the afternoon when Parker was terribly unlucky not to claim his second hat-trick of the season when he got on the end of a cross from Scott but his arching header hit the top of the crossbar. This all before the hour.
Rhule then found space but his shot lacked power and was claimed by Broadbent and then Parker fired wide from another Scott cross. Nelson glanced a header wide from Freiter’s free kick as Cray continued to look for more goals.
Rhule’s ball into the near post was met by the faintest of touches from Freiter and Broadbent had to push the ball behind for a corner from which Freiter shot over. Then Leader tried his luck with a storming run forward and drove a shot just wide.
Jerome Federico was brought into the fray and from his first contribution down the right put over a great cross meant for Rhule which was put behind for a corner.
Shoreham to their credit kept on going but seemed to struggle to come to terms with the pace of the Cray wide men. Their only semblance of a chance came when they won a corner down the left and from Scott Elgar’s cross the ball came to Gaskin who shot well over.
Incredibly, Cray hit the woodwork for the fourth time in the game when Freiter found Dawson who from 25 yards hit a cracking effort which crashed back off the crossbar.
Another of the plusses for the afternoon was the return of Karl Dent for his first appearance since the game at Moneyfields in mid November.
Within two minutes of coming on, Dent showed his true class with a tremendous strike to make it 6-0. Williams put a cross in from the left which Rhule got a flick on to but the ball went across goal to Federico who set up Dent who from twelve yards fired in a great shot which hit the back of the net.
Still with the game well won Cray pushed forward for more goals and Rhule saw a near post volley blocked by Alex Gathern for a corner. Then Dent’s corner was pushed away by Broadbent under pressure from Parker and Dawson headed wide.
The last word of the game though fell to the captain, Dawson who deserved a goal for his drive and desire and it came in the 90th minute. A patient build up saw the ball switch to the right to Mundele who found Federico whose first time cross was deflected goalwards by Elgar and Dawson up with the keeper headed the ball into the net to complete a remarkable afternoon for Cray.
The win keeps Cray in second place on 51 points, three behind leaders Lewes and two clesr of Corinthian Casuals, Walton Casuals and Carshalton Athletic but with a tremendous goal difference of +41.
Shoreham it has to be said kept trying to play their game but were not really able to stem the flow of attacks especially second half but although bottom of the table still have plenty of time to try and build a recovery in 2018.
Cray are next in action on Saturday (30th December) at home to Faversham Town, 3pm ko as the festive fixtures continue.
Cray Wanderers: Nick Blue, Ben Mundele, Barney Williams, Jay Leader, Mitchell Nelson, Lea Dawson (Capt.), Zak Henry Michael Freiter (Karl Dent, 81), Michael Power (Freddie Parker, 19), Aaron Rhule, Brandon Scott (Jerome Federico, 69): Subs: Dean Carpenter, Marcus Evans.
Shoreham: James Broadbent, Alex Gathern, Alfie Proto-Gates, Scott Elgar, Odofin O’Niel, Jack Whitmore, Marlon Pinder (Lauric Diakisse, 81) Ross Myers (Will Robinson, H/T), George Gaskin, Nick Collyer, Steve Herbert Subs: Peter Bullivant, Scott Packer
Booked: Gaskin, Elgar
Referee: Alex Rayment
Assistant Referees: Craig Pullen, Liam Giles