Berkhamsted Youth turned in yet another incredible performance as they thumped St Albans Rangers 15-0 in the Watford Friendly League Challenge Cup second round.
Ritchie Hanlon’s team have now scored a remarkable 51 goals in just six games, including two matches when they didn’t score, to give them a goal-scoring rate of 8.5 a game.
Despite the emphatic scoreline against St Albans, a similar pattern emerged when it took the boys a period of the game to settle down and start the scoring spree.
Controlled possession ensued but the first goal did not come until the 16th minute when George Wareham found Ross Spendlove in space to secure his fifth goal of the season with a simple tap in.
It was one of those games when every player on the pitch covered themselves in glory with fantastic pass-and-move play by the likes of Alla Ezzedine, Jamie Hanlon, Joe Hubbard, Dylan Jones and Ethan Brimmer who excelled on the right wing.
Next it was the turn of man of the match Toby Dewick who deserved the accolade for what was to happen in the next seven minutes and a player – not alone – that has improved so much in the three months since the team came to the Broadwater Stadium.
He made it 2-0 with a fine solo run on 17 minutes and then Alla found him with a great ball on 21 minutes to make it 3-0.
Dewick’s hat-trick was complete on 24 minutes when Alla and Spendlove combined to feed him for a lovely lift over the keeper for a 4-0 lead.
Hanlon then got in on the act as he started his contribution of four assists and a brace of goals on 26 minutes when he found Spendlove, who despatched with a sweet strike on 26 minutes.
Hanlon then crossed for Alla who made it 6-0 on 28 minutes. Alla got his second of the game on 30 minutes with a spectacular strike from 25 yards to put the team in seventh heaven.
Max Bustamante, who has been recovering from injury, had a quiet game by his high standards up until this point but as per usual he started to own the game with his first of a four-goal haul on 34 minutes with a great strike from 20 yards to make it 8-0.
The team goal of the game came on the stroke of half-time when the ever-improving Olly Sanders and Ethan Brimmer combined to set up Bustamante for his second and Berkhamsted’s ninth for an incredibly emphatic half-time scoreline.
The second half started with Berkhamsted almost conceding in comical fashion.
The usually solid defensive rock that is Will Hall played a one-two with his own feet and lost the ball to gift St Albans’ centre forward with a one-on-one with Freddie Sellers that was superbly tipped round the post by the Berko netminder.
It was soon time to revert to normal service and the scoring for Berkhamsted continued when Spendlove found Hanlon in space who superbly picked out Sanders who struck a sweet shot past the hapless St Albans keeper which was met with great applause by the many visiting parents that are an absolute credit to the club.
An 11-0 margin was soon round the corner on 46 minutes when Bustamante fed a great ball to Hanlon who was clean through on goal and found the bottom corner to put a big smile on his face.
Bustamante then won possession in the centre circle and ran through the defence to score on 49 minutes for 12-0.
On 55 minutes it was unlucky 13 for St Albans when Alla passed a great ball to Bustamante who fired home for his fourth of the game and eighth for the season in just three games.
Will Hall headed home a fine Hanlon cross on 59 minutes for 14-0.
The final goal came a minute later on 60 minutes when Spendlove found Hanlon who made no mistake from 15 yards to make it 15-0.
This was the team’s fourth emphatic win of the season out of six – scorelines reading 20-1, 15-0, 9-1, and 7-2 for Hanlon’s young Comrades in what is already shaping up to be a special season.
With Berko in three cup competitions which are now entering the latter stages, silverware will hopefully be on the horizon come the spring.
Berko: Freddie Sellers, Olly Sanders, Toby Dewick (man of the match), Will Hall, Max Bustamante, Ross Spendlove, Jamie Hanlon, Ethan Brimmer, George Wareham, Alla Ezzedine, Dylan Jones, Joe Hubbard.