Marriott on fire as Linnets thump struggling Lowestoft
- Credit: Archant
Adam Marriott bagged himself a Boxing Day hat-trick as King's Lynn Town avenged an early-season defeat with a 4-0 win over their Suffolk rivals.
Marriott and Michael Gash were, like the team, in unstoppable form against a Lowestoft side in trouble at the other end of the table.
While victory takes Lynn up to third, the Trawlerboys are fourth from bottom.
The game started 15 minutes late after one of the linesmen was taken ill before kick-off, but it didn't put the Linnets out of their stride as they got off to the perfect start, going ahead after five minutes through Marriott. It was a well-worked goal, Lynn moving the ball from left to right, through Michael Gash and Michael Clunan before it reached Jordan Richards on the right of the area. His first attempt to put it into the danger area was blocked, but he saw Marriott in space, pulled the ball back, and the striker placed it through bodies and into the net.
Lynn were enjoying good possession, with Lowestoft chasing - and it got considerably worse for the visitors on nine minutes when Marriott grabbed a second. He took possession in the right channel, had a look but initially decided against a shot – then suddenly unleashed a low rocket which keeper Elvijs Putnins couldn't halt to his right.
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Lynn couldn't have wished for a better start, while Lowestoft probably didn't know what had hit them.
Rossi Jarvis did well to hook a through ball away from danger as Marriott went in search of a hat-trick goal.
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The Trawlerboys tried to respond, but found Lynn's defence in obstinate mood, although Armani Schaar proved the game was far from over as he twisted and turned inside the home area before driving in a low shot which a combination of post and keeper smuggled out for a corner.
Lowestoft were handed a lifeline on 17 minutes when Ryan Jarvis was adjudged to have fouled Kieran Higgs in the area.
Shaun Bammant stepped up but fluffed his lines, his penalty easily saved to his right by Alex Street. The penalty was a soft as the foul which caused it - but that didn't stop Lynn's goalkeeping assistant manager Paul Bastock doing a jig of delight on the touchline.
Lowestoft weren't short of effort – Ben Fowkes showed a clean set of heels as Lowestoft broke but with two players in support, right and left, opted for a shot and got only a corner when there was arguably better reward with a different choice. Bammant did get the ball in the net on another break, but the offside flag had already been raised.
Lynn's passing game was draining the visitors – physically and mentally – and they needed a huge second-half effort to rescue something from the game.
The early stages of the second half didn't suggest much had changed – Lowestoft struggled to get the ball off the visitors, whose passing game was excellent.
Craig Parker, six yards out, couldn't quite dig the ball from under his feet after good work by Gash, Chris Henderson and Frazer Blake-Tracey as Lynn looked to wrap it up. Putnins did well to block a Michael Clunan shot as Lynn turned the screw.
The resistance finally broke on 68 minutes when Clunan put in a corner and Gash rose highest to head it past Putnins - the least the striker deserved after a superb unselfish performance.
It got even better for Lynn three minutes later when the ball dropped kindly in the area and Marriott lashed it home.
At the other end Lowestoft skipper Adam Smith planted a free-kick straight down Street's throat, but by now Lynn fans were greeting every pass with an 'ole'.
Marriott almost turned provider as he played in sub Ryan Hawkins, whose right-footer was tipped wide by Putnins.
Lynn's goalscorers, Marriott and Gash, were given an early rest - and the applause for both of them was the least they deserved.
In the end it was men against Trawlerboys.
King's Lynn Town: Street, Richards, Fryatt, McAuley, Blake-Tracey, Jarvis, Clunan, Parker, Henderson (Hawkins 67), Gash (Clarke 75), Marriott (Limb 75). Subs: Castellan, Bastock
Lowestoft Town: Putnins, Wilkinson, Brown, Pollock, Jarvis, Vega, Schaar, Smith (Curry 75), Bammant (Pinheiro 75), Higgs, Fowkes. Subs: Wren, Hedge, Tann.