Penrith 0-6 Morpeth Town
A Sean Taylor masterclass ensured a comfortable win for the Highwaymen at Penrith on Saturday.
Netting a 25-minute hat-trick, the winger opened the scoring with a far post header 11 minutes in before a quickfire double 12 minutes later ensured his side would have a routine afternoon’s work in Cumbria.
Liam Henderson added to a convincing lead on 39 minutes as the visitors cruised to a dominant position by half-time.
Luke Carr and Ben Sayer added to the score-line as the visitors romped to a 6-0 victory.
New signing Stephen Turnbull needed to be content with a place on the bench after the midweek heroics of a side who came from 1-0 down to beat Marske United 3-2 in a game forever remembered for Joe Walton’s stunning late winner.
With Curtis Coppen missing, Michael Turner slotted into the back four at left-back as Chris Reid shuffled over to centre-half.
That consistency in team selection helped Morpeth start strongly as they penned their hosts into their own half for long spells of the opening 10 minutes.
That pressure delivered the opening goal for the visitors from the all-too-predictable source of Taylor. The midfielder, following a pin-point cross from Keith Graydon, found space at the back post to power a header through the hands of Dan Eccles and give the Highwaymen a deserved lead.
Getting in behind Dean Crozier with ease, Taylor scored again on 23 minutes as he latched on to a superb cross-field ball from Joe Walton before lobbing the keeper with a sublime chip.
Filling his boots, the winger completed a sensational trio of goals two minutes later by steaming in at the far post to slot home and make it 3-0 with less than a third of the game gone.
Liam Henderson then got in on the scoring act, hammering home a 39th minute rebound after Ben Sayer’s drive was pushed into his path.
In a more subdued second half, the hosts were clearly getting frustrated. That was epitomised by Jonny Murray’s red card – for two yellows – after he shoved Keith Graydon.
As the game meandered to a predictable conclusion, Turnbull came on for his Highwaymen debut in the 65th minute before fellow sub Luke Carr nearly extended the visitors’ advantage further. He jinked his way into the area but found the frame of Eccles with his strike.
Carr would get his goal on 72 minutes after he was felled in the area by Dean Crozier. The sub dusted himself down and then slotted the ball into the bottom corner from the spot to make it five.
With two minutes left, and the game a formality, Ben Sayer picked up on a loose ball to saunter through the home defence and slot the ball into the corner to top a fantastic afternoon in Cumbria for the Highwaymen.
Morpeth are next in action when they journey to Washington next Saturday (14th)