JON Clements emphatically ended a goal drought that has seen the former top SSML top marksman score only three times this season, by notching a quartet of goals in 26 minutes, as WGC crushed Kempston Rovers to reach the last 16 of the CSS Southern League Cup.
Clearly, Kempston didn’t value progress in the competition as much as the Citizens, the Beds team club fielding their Under 25 development side for the tie and subsequently receiving a real drubbing.
Clements, who scored 36 times for the BP Mitchell Stadium side last campaign on the way to the SSML title, has struggled for goals since WGC became a Southern League club, but he firmly put that struggle behind him with a slick foursome here.
To add to youthful Kempston’s problems, they played the final 54 minutes of the tie with 10 men, goalkeeper Michael Hudson being sent off for the challenge that saw him pull down Clements on 36 minutes, as the eager forward attempted to put away a rebound.
Clements opened his tally with that spot-kick and then proceeded to turn in a short range effort on 53 minutes and slot in two rebounds after both Jon Sexton, with a cross and Nick Elliott, with a header, had seen efforts come back off the woodwork, in 58 and 62 minutes.
Stuart Zanone continued his goal-a-game sequence, making it five from five, when he stooped to head in a fine swinging cross from Clements the provider, in the opening minute of the tie.
There was a landmark second on 17 minutes, when central defender Dave Corran cleverly breasted down another Clements pass and clipped
an accurate effort over Hudson into the top corner for 2-0 and his first goal, after two seasons with the club.
The penalty made it three by the interval and then the Clements hat-trick salvo in nine minutes stretched WGC into a 6-0 lead.
Danny Payne, the WGC skipper, got in on the scoring act sliding in a seventh, after good build-up that included newcomers Andrew Iwediuno and Danny May and Jay Rolfe, rounded off the scoring with probably the pick of the bunch, a beautiful curling effort high into the top corner from 30 yards out, 13 minutes from time.
New signing Dave Keenleyside, from Hertford, a player WGC have been interested in since his SSML days with Harpenden, impressed in the final half-hour.
WGC know it will be a lot tougher than this when they try to reach the quarter-finals in early December and also when they make a league visit to Kempston, in under a fortnight’s time.
WGC: Green, May, Close (Iwediuno 65), Corran, Sexton, Payne, Elliott (Keenleyside 61), Spaul, Rolfe, Zanone, Clements (Bond 71).