Skegness Town 4, Cleethorpes Town Reserves 0

The Skegness Town Squad.
The Skegness Town Squad.

The Lilywhites got their season off to the best possible start with a comfortable win over their seaside rivals from Cleethorpes.

The Lilywhites got their season off to the best possible start with a comfortable win over their seaside rivals from Cleethorpes.

With Rick Lovelace and Sean Chamberlain on cricket duty and Jake Akers suspended, Town boss Nick Chapman brought in full back Jack Cotton and goalkeeper James Lambley.

As the score suggests, the Lilywhites’ keeper didn’t have much to do, but in the early stages he snuffed out the threat from the visitors.

Town survived an early penalty shout when Michael Hornsby went down after coming into contact with Jack Smith, but gradually they grabbed the initiative.

They took the lead in the 24th minute when Ben Davison challenged keeper Scott Drury for an Andy Parish free kick from just inside the Cleethorpes half. The Skegness skipper got enough on the header to divert it home.

A minute later the Lilywhites doubled their advantage. Liam Parker’s probing run opened up the Cleethorpes defence and his cross to the near post was met by brother McCauley who steered the ball into the bottom corner.

Skegness continued to ask the questions and the pressure paid off with their third goal. Another McCauley Parker corner ricocheted around the visitors’ penalty area, Liam Parker rattled the cross bar with his shot and Davison rose to nod home the rebound.

The Skegness skipper completed his hat-trick just before the hour mark. Michael Gardner was upended in the box and Davison stepped forward to coolly slot home number four.

Cleethorpes, who introduced the experience of Tommy Watson at the break, did manage to stem the flow of attacks but the Lilywhites were wasteful in front of goal at times.

Davison dragged a shot wide when well placed and Parish headed Liam Papworth’s free kick over the bar from six yards.

It was a good all-round performance from the Lilywhites and a useful three points.

Manager Chapman said after the game: “It was nice to get off with a win, and to do it so convincingly was obviously pleasing.”

But he was not getting carried away on the back of one result. “No-one in the camp is getting over-excited, as consistency is the key,” he said. “This is something we have struggled with in the last few seasons.

“We will enjoy our win and look forward to another stern test from Ruston Sports on Saturday.”