Clough 9, Moore 61, 90+2


Noel 58

TWO audacious Kieffer Moore strikes earned the Magpies a hard-fought win against a no-nonsense AFC Hornchurch side at the Avenue last night.

Charlie Clough’s early header put Dorchester in front only for Reiss Noel to level for the visitors just before the hour mark.

However, the deadly Moore came up trumps for the home side with a cheeky back heel minutes later and repeated the feat in injury time to move the county town side up to 10th in the Blue Square Bet South standings.

Phil Simkin stuck with the side that started the win at Eastleigh, the only change to the squad coming on the bench where Arran Pugh returned to replace Calvin Brooks.

With a decent travelling support behind them the visitors had the first chance of the night when Ashley Nicholls gave the ball away just outside his own box but Chris Bourne’s shot was pushed out by Jason Matthews.

Then at the other end Hornchurch skipper Elliot Styles was his side’s saviour, getting back to clear a Tom Nichols effort off the line after the Magpies’ striker had flicked the ball past Joe Woolley from  Moore’s knock down.

Less than a minute later the home side did take the lead and it was a goal that Woolley will want to forget in a hurry.

A Nick Crittenden cross from the left was met by Clough and the ball looped in under the crossbar with the visiting keeper appearing to think that the header was going to miss.

The Avenue pitch was difficult for both teams but to be fair to Hornchurch it was they who were dealing with the sticky surface the better and on one or two occasions the Magpies’ defenders looked unsteady with the ball at their feet.

Hornchurch also presented a threat from set pieces, notably the long throw-ins of full back Billy Coyne, one of which forced Mark Jermyn into an important clearance.

Not long after that a dangerous looking long ball, searching out Lewis Smith, was superbly headed back to Matthews by the Dorchester goal scorer.

Smith then turned provider when, having been given far too much space to pick out his pass on the halfway line, fed the rampaging Bourne but he ended up screwing his left foot shot wide of the far post.

There wasn’t a great deal to get excited about in the 15 minutes before the break with neither side creating a clear cut opportunity as Matthews and Woolley weren’t really tested at all.

The half ended with Crittenden going on a surging run down the right and although Woolley prevented the ball reaching Moore the Hornchurch stopper gathered at the second attempt after fumbling the cross the first time.

The second half started as the first had ended and the crowd had to wait a good 10 minutes for a chance at either end. That came when Joey May fed Smith but his snap shot went wide of Matthews’s right-hand upright.

Then followed an incident packed four minutes.

First, Jake Smeeton was booked for a foul on Alex Bentley and when May swung in a dangerous free-kick the Magpies’ defence seemed to go to sleep and centre back Noel was left to head past Matthews for 1-1.

But with Lewis Morgan on for Jamie Gleeson, the hosts hit back just after the hour mark. Crittenden drove in a low cross and Moore, virtually with his back to goal around six yards out, flicked the ball into the corner of the net despite Woolley getting a hand to it.

Clough was then booked for dissent before Crittenden just failed to latch on to substitute Morgan’s left wing cross.

Hornchurch’s Smith followed Clough into the book for the same offence and just before he had to be replaced by Sam Malsom, Neil Martin almost grabbed a third but Woolley parried his effort and then gathered the ball a yard or two from the goal line.

There was still plenty of time left for the visitors to snatch an equaliser and they could well have got it. Noel nearly doubled his tally for the night but blasted high and wide from just a few yards out then, with two minutes of normal time left, Matthews produced a vital save to deny Rickie Hayles.

With the clock running down the Magpies put the result beyond doubt when Ben Watson, who had earlier come on for Tom Nichols, found room on the left, crossed to Moore and the big man again flicked the ball, this time with his left foot, past Woolley.

Magpies: Matthews, Jermyn, Smeeton, Clough, N Walker, Gleeson (Morgan 57), Crittenden, Nicholls, Moore, Nichols (Watson 55), Martin (Malsom 79). Subs not used: Pugh, S Walker.

Hornchurch: Woolley, Coyne (St Aimie 73), Bentley, May, Noel, Hayles, Eyong (Spencer 76), Styles, Tuohy, Smith, Bourne (Gray 81). Subs not used: Love, Glover.