Depleted Nailers suffer a third defeat in eight days

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A third successive defeat in a week saw Belper Town hammered 5-1 at promotion-chasing Chasetown on Saturday.

The Nailers were down to the bare bones for the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Division One South clash.

The one bright Belper spot on a warm afternoon was Lee Williamson’s calm finish to make it 1-1 just past the quarter mark.

Chasetown failed to clear and the assistant manager finished like a seasoned campaigner.

Belper had made two enforced changes. Dominic Allen and Anton Daniels picked up injuries midweek, bringing Joe Hunt and Will Dennis into the starting XI.

There was joy for the home side within ten minutes as Nick Wellecomme glanced his header in off the post to begin the romp.

Young Joe Searson-Smithard was without doubt the busier keeper, stopping point-blank from George Cater to start his save count and prevent a second for Chasetown.

Belper’s reply through Williamson was short lived as they were back under siege.

Searson-Smithard denied Jake Lovatt and Wellecomme in quick succession but just before the half-hour Wellecomme ran down the left, floated a ball to the back post and Lovatt headed into an empty net.

As the second half kicked off the match was quickly over as weakened Belper allowed full-back Oli Hayward three attempts at a cross, his third finding Lovatt who swept home.

Lovatt sealed his hat-trick in less than an hour with a fine finish to match the lofted pass from Jack Langstone that found him.

Substitute Danny Cocks came off the bench to complete the Nailers’ misery.

His first attempt was smothered by the resilient Searson-Smithard, however the ball looped straight into Cocks’ path for a tap-in. The keeper then denied Cocks a second from a volleyed shot.

In the final 15 minutes Belper had more possession, but it was too little too late.

Belper Town: Searson-Smithard, Thornberry, Hunt, Dennis (Garnett 78), McIntosh, Harrison (Butcher 70), Steele, Lloyd, Birks (Taylor 56), Williamson, Cole. Unused subs: Goddard.

Chasetown: Pond, Hayward, O’Reilly, Baker (Mzungwana 70), O’Neill, O’Reilly, Lovatt (Dundas 73), Langston, Wellecomme (Cocks 59), Whieldon, Cater. Unused subs: Hardiman, Smith.

Ref: Richard Price.

Att: 257.