Ashton United 0-5 Boston United
By Craig Singleton
Boston United served up a sensational first half performance to ensure safe progress in the Buildbase FA Trophy on Saturday afternoon.
The Pilgrims won 5-0 at National League North rivals Ashton United to book their place in the first round draw after a totally dominant display on Tameside.
Max Wright and Nicky Walker both scored twice before half-time, with Gavin Allott, who had contributed three assists in the first half, adding United's fifth eight minutes after the break.
United boss Craig Elliott had re-instated Spencer Harris at centre-half, with James Jones denied permission to play by parent club Salford City and Ben Middleton suffering from an as-yet-unspecified foot injury.
Wright and Walker were restored to the United XI too and, in conjunction with Allott as their focal point, proceeded to rip Ashton to shreds during a one-sided half.
Wright’s cross had already been hacked to safety underneath his own crossbar by Mark Lees in the second minute before home defender Aaron Chalmers was fortunate to escape a red card two minutes later for a horrible lunge on the Grimsby Town loanee.
WRIGHT had the last laugh a minute further on when he latched onto Allott’s flick, following Ben Davies’ initial cross, to drive the visitors into the lead.
Allott subsequently robbed Chalmers to flick the ball into the path of WALKER to neatly lift home a lob in the 18th minute.
It was effectively game, set and match 11 minutes later when Allott nodded back Davies’ deep delivery from the right and WALKER deftly headed past Luke Pilling from close-range.
United added their fourth goal in the 33rd minute when WRIGHT turned on the style to breeze through various Ashton challenges and power home a low left-footer from 18 yards.
Ashton’s best chance arrived moments after half-time when Sam Sheridan glanced a header narrowly wide while George Willis was in no mood to relinquish his clean sheet with a smart save to deny Liam Martin.
The move of the match saw United go five goals to the good in the 53rd minute when Andi Thanoj sprayed a majestic crossfield pass into the path of Ashley Jackson, who subsequently delivered a terrific left-wing cross onto the head of ALLOTT 12 yards from goal.
United introduced Jay Rollins with a quarter-of-an-hour to play following a long injury lay-off and they went close to further goals with Davies rattling the crossbar with a whipped 25-yard free-kick and Pilling spectacularly denying sub Jordan Slew.
Willis had the last say by denying Liam Tomsett a last-gasp consolation as United maintained their clean sheet to cap one of their best performances in recent history.
Ashton (4-3-3): Luke Pilling; Mark Lees, Luke Ashworth, Aaron Chalmers, Matt Hill (Scott Kay 46); Sam Sheridan (John Roberts 57), Matt Regan, Liam Tomsett; Bradley Jackson, Liam Martin, Ryan Crowther (Ramirez Howarth 46). Subs (not used): Casien Anghel, Joao Hendes (gk).
Boston (4-3-3): George Willis; Ben Davies, Ryan Qualter (Josh Hine 82), Spencer Harris, Ashley Jackson; Brad Abbott, Andi Thanoj, Liam Agnew; Max Wright, Gavin Allott (Jordan Slew 70), Nicky Walker (Jay Rollins 75). Subs (not used): Jonathan Wafula, Sebastian Malkowski (gk).
Referee: Aaron Jackson.