Ross is a Hot Shot on a Cold Night
Four goals from Ross Gilfedder helped Gorleston to a comfortable victory on a snowy night in Fakenham.
Stewart Larter made two changes to the team that had been unfortunate to lose last time out at Saffron Walden.
There was no Harley Clements or Elliott Hannant. They were replaced by Ismael Fatadjo and Luke Goreham.
Goreham was making his 250th Gorleston appearance and was captain for the game. There was a Mitch McKay milestone too as he made his 100th appearance.
With temperatures below zero and the pitch beginning to harden the ref deemed it playable and Gorleston got off to the best possible start with two quick fire goals inside the first four minutes.
After just 90 seconds good work from Joel Watts on the left saw him swing over a cross which was met first time by Gilfedder in the box giving the keeper no chance.
Two minutes later Gilfedder was involved again with strong hold up play before laying the ball back to Fatadjo. Fatadjo then picked out Watts, who turned and fired a dipping effort into the net from 20 yards.
Despite being two down Fakenham responded well and had the majority of the possession but Gorleston always looked dangerous going forward and it was the Greens who struck again in the 23rd minute.
Again Gilfedder was heavily involved. On the edge of the box, he attempted to flick the ball over his and the defenders head but it struck a raised arm of the defender.
It must have been inches away from being in the penalty area but the free kick was awarded a foot outside the box. However, that made no difference to Gilfedder who, from a short run up, thumped the ball into the roof of the net, clipping the underside of the bar on its way in.
Five minutes later, Gilfedder completed a 28 minute hat trick. Watts won the ball on the left and played it low to Gilfedder on the left corner of the box with his back to goal. He turned inside and curled the ball into the far corner of the goal.
The Ghosts made a change and put two up front to try and get back into the game and they pulled a goal back in the 41st minute when Gorleston failed to clear a corner and it fell to Jack Richardson on the edge of the area where he drilled it low into the bottom corner.
Their hopes of a big comeback were dashed straight away.
The lively Fatadjo dribbled his way into the box and, as he tried to turn, had his legs taken from under him.
The referee pointed to the spot and Watts stepped up to finish with aplomb for his second of the game.
The Greens were slow out of the changing room for the second period.
Fatadjo attempted to deceive the keeper with a cheeky effort from wide with the outside of his foot but it was the hosts who had the best chance to score again in the 50th minute when the referee awarded them a penalty for an apparent handball.
Kyle Plumb struck the spot kick firmly but too close to the keeper and Scott Foreman got down to save well.
By now it was beginning to snow and it seemed the only thing that might beat the Greens would be if the weather caused an abandonment.
That said, Gorleston had taken their foot off the pedal and were punished on the hour mark when they gave the opposition too much space through the middle of the park allowing Ricky Claxton to reduce the deficit.
Tommy Rix denied Watts his hat trick before Foreman plucked a Lewis Sturman free kick from the top corner.
Gorleston completed the scoring in the 74th minute, winning the ball back from a Fakenham throw in.
Gilfedder collected the ball on the left corner of the box, turned and shot, lifting it over the keeper and into the net.
The Greens could have made it seven in the last minute when substitute Jack Garrod was through on goal. He flicked the ball past the advancing keeper but it went a foot wide of the empty goal.
For those wondering, the last time Gorleston scored six away from home was only 31st January last year at Swaffham in the League Cup. And the last time a Gorleston player scored four or more in a match was 15th December 2012 when the Greens beat Clacton 10-2 with Ali McKenna netting seven, which I believe is a league record.
Gorleston: Scott Foreman, Jackson Ramm, Luke Goreham (c), Isaac Burrage, David Shade, Owen French, Ismael Fatadjo (Jack Garrod 73), Mitch McKay (Kyle Ingram 69), Ross Gilfedder, Sean Perfect, Joel Watts (Nathan Russell 80)
Goals: Gilfedder 2, 23, 28, 74; Watts 4, 43
Fakenham Town: Tommy Rix, Shane Akers, Harry Atkins, Daniel Williams (Ryan Fuller 28), Jimmy Williams, Ricky Claxton (Lawrie Blythe 80), Lewis Sturman (c), Kyle Plumb, Jack Richardson, Josh Reeve (Luke Grey 65)
Booking: J Williams 42
Goals: Richardson 41; Claxton 60
Ref: Peter Venables
|2||Other efforts on target||5|
|3||Other efforts off target||4|
|0||Other efforts against woodwork||0|
|11||Free kicks for||9|