REDDITCH bounced back from a couple of disappointing results with a convincing 9-0 victory over Edgbaston 3rds to maintain their West Midlands Division One promotion push.
With matches against promotion rivals Market Drayton and Ludlow to end the campaign, the Kingfishers knew Saturday’s first of five remaining games was pretty much must-win and the outcome was never in doubt.
The result leaves Redditch in third place on goal difference, level on points with rivals Ludlow (second) and Stourport (fourth) who also won their matches at the weekend. All three remain three points behind leaders Market Drayton with four games to go.
On Saturday Redditch visit seventh-placed Aldridge & Walsall, looking to take revenge after A&W beat Redditch 2-1 in November.
Redditch were ahead within the first minute on Saturday as Jacob Beard pounced on a loose ball inside the D to fire home.
The second goal was more of a team effort as Andy Billingham played the ball down the right-hand side to James Makin who passed inside to George Haslam before finding Beard in the D and the latter shot first-time past the goalkeeper.
Man of the match Beard was again involved with the third goal as his shot was saved by the Edgbaston goalkeeper but only as far as Makin who shot first time, only for the keeper to save that too.
However, it was Makin who was first to the rebound again and this time managed to slip the ball past the goalkeeper for 3-0.
Edgbaston rarely threatened the Redditch defence and the Kingfishers continued to pile the pressure on. Billingham was provider for the fourth goal as his through ball from deep found Dan Waite in the D and Waite’s whose excellent first touch on the reverse stick gave the defenders no chance and he was able to coolly flick the ball into the back of the net for his ninth goal of the season.
Makin then added a fifth Redditch goal before half-time with a powerful strike from the top of the D which came off the goalkeeper’s helmet before hitting the back of the net.
The goals kept coming in the second half with Luke Baker working hard down the right-hand side, making space to fire a cross into the D which was deflected home by Beard to complete his hat-trick and register his 20th goal of the season.
The seventh goal was a little more fortuitous as the Edgbaston goalkeeper and defence made an error in front of goal and Haslam was first to pounce on the loose ball to score into an empty net.
Billingham turned from provider to scorer with the eighth goal of the game with a drag flick from a penalty corner which went low between the goalkeeper’s legs.
The rout was completed as the final whistle blew as captain Adrian Young deflected home another penalty corner.