Goulding 30, 47, 52, Cogan 83
JEFF Goulding’s hat-trick and a late Barry Cogan free-kick saw Dover inflict yet more misery on the Magpies at the foot of the Skrill South table.
The defeat, Dorchester’s fourth in a row, was far from how captain Mark Jermyn would have wanted to mark his 600th game for the club.
The Magpies’ performance had all the hallmarks of a team struggling to avoid relegation with several players guilty of basic mistakes that added up to a woefully poor showing.
Dorchester boss Phil Simkin made four changes to the side that started the defeat to Boreham Wood with Jermyn, striker Warren Byerley, right-back Calvin Brooks and teenage centre-forward Dan Munday coming in.
Danny Way, Ryan Case and Josh Tennant dropped to the bench while Ashley Vickers only appeared at Boreham Wood as emergency cover.
A familiar name on the Magpies’ bench was that of Elliot Ward, back in the fold after playing a handful of games for the club at the start of the season.
Dover manager Chris Kinnear brought his son, also called Chris, Sean Raggett and Goulding into the Dover starting line-up with Nathan Elder and Richard Orlu dropping to the bench, and Michael Kamara missing out altogether.
The Dorchester ground staff had worked hard to ensure the pitch was playable for the hosts’ first game at home since Boxing Day, but it was clear from the start that it was never going to be a free-flowing feast of football.
And Jake Smeeton nearly got himself in all sorts of trouble in the first few minutes when he almost got caught in possession inside his own box.
The first effort on goal fell the way of the visitors on seven minutes when Goulding played in Liam Bellamy and his tame shot was gathered by Alan Walker-Harris.
Despite the sticky conditions, the hosts managed to string a few passes together with Sam Lanahan and Byerley linking up before Fraser Colmer’s cross was cleared.
Bellamy headed just over at the other end on 19 minutes and James Rogers’s shot from 20 yards was kept out by a combination of Walker-Harris and Colmer.
The warning signs were there for the Magpies and on the half-hour mark Dover took the lead through Goulding.
Receiving the ball just outside the home side’s box, the striker let fly with a powerful left-foot drive that found the bottom corner of the net – appeals for a handball by Goulding in the build-up to the goal were waved away.
Sixty seconds later and Goulding was bearing down on the Magpies’ goal once again, only this time Jermyn intervened illegally and picked up a yellow card for his foul.
Sensing a second was there for the taking, Tom Murphy used his pace to get down the left wing and Cogan’s shot took a deflection off a defender and was cleared by left-back Colmer.
There was a distinct lack of goalmouth action at the other end of the pitch, though that didn’t mean the front two of Byerley and Munday weren’t working hard to make something happen.
With the Magpies having to defend so much, when they did get the ball it was difficult for the rest of the team to get forward in support as quickly as they would have wanted.
The first half was brought to a close by a rasping long-range effort from Kinnear that Walker-Harris pushed around the post for a corner.
Any hopes the home side had of making a game of it in the second half were blown out of the water inside two minutes.
Bellamy won the ball in the Dorchester danger zone, fed Goulding and he calmly side-footed his shot past Walker-Harris.
A third would have arrived moments later but Jermyn’s goalline clearance kept out Murphy’s blast from close range.
However, it did become 3-0 and it was that man Goulding who completed his hat-trick by applying the finishing touch to Rogers’s floated cross that could well have been going in any-
There was little chance of the hosts salvaging anything from the game at this point and the difference in quality was clear to see for everyone.
The county town side had their first real opportunity with nearly an hour on the clock. Munday played in Byerley and when the ball broke to the former he was denied by Mitchell Walker in the Dover goal.
After that Dover had a number of chances to extend their lead – several through some slack Magpies play – with Walker-Harris producing a particularly smart stop from Murphy.
The introduction of Jack Twyford and Way, for Charlie Losasso and Lanahan respectively, couldn’t spur the hosts on to a dramatic comeback and seven minutes from the end Cogan curled a free-kick past the helpless Walker-Harris.
Magpies: Walker-Harris 6, Brooks 4, Colmer 7, Jermyn 6, Smeeton 6, Lanahan 4 (Way 77, 5), Crittenden 6, Gleeson 6, Munday 5, Byerley 6, Losasso 5 (Twyford 65, 5). Subs not used: Case, Ward, Tennant.
Dover: Walker, Stone, Wynter, Kinnear (Orlu 83), Raggett, Forbes, Bellamy, Rogers, Goulding (Charles 74), Cogan, Murphy (Ademola 80). Subs not used: Elder, Modeste
Yellow cards: Magpies – Jermyn (foul 31)
Dover – Wynter (dissent 76)
Referee: Alan Young (Ely)