The game kicked off in nightmare fashion for Jay Lovett’s side, as Jake Elliot gave the U’s the lead after just four minutes. Things went from bad to worse, as just eleven minutes later, former Hillian, Ben Pope doubled the visitors’ advantage from the penalty spot – following an adjudged handball on Louie Downey. The Hillians were struggling to gain a grip on the game, with the home side’s only chance of the half falling to Drew Matthews – who’s thunderous free-kick was saved comfortably by Louis Rogers.
Within ten minutes of the restart, Chris Agutter’s side made it three; as Daniel Ajakaiye tucked home following some pinball inside the Hillians box. In the 64th minute, Mason Doughty passed up a golden opportunity to get his name on the scoresheet – as he dragged his effort wide following some brilliant work from O’Shaye Giraud-Hutchinson. The game appeared to be drawing to a close, with the visitors in control. However, there was one final chance for Jay Lovett’s men to reduce the deficit, as, in the closing minutes, the referee awarded the Hillians a spot-kick – which was calmly converted by Scott Kirkwood.
All in all, a clinical performance from a strong Hastings outfit.
A massive thank you to every single one of you Hillians who braved the brisk conditions to support the club.
Next up, we’re going abroad!