Rossendale Free Press
Borough back on track as Lew hits hat-trick
AFTER the disappointment of the 3-0 defeat away at Ashton Town on Saturday, Borough quickly returned to winning ways with a 4-1 victory over Garstang FC and a sublime hat-trick from Lewis Byrne.
The visitors were coming into the game off the back of an unbeaten run of nine games and with the season hotting up as it moves into the final few months every single point is crucial if Borough are looking to cement a playoff position.
Brent Peters made several changes to the team that started the game away to Ashton Town.
He included Josh Walne at right back and moved Ryan Siddle into the heart of the midfield alongside Callum Hewitt.
Aidan Hussey was on the bench and a welcome return to the squad for the tough tackling Ross Mallinson.
In pre-match a lot had been said about Borough’s slow starts in games, but that was soon erased when Borough took the lead within four minutes.
A lovely ball was played through from midfield by Ryan Siddle into the feet of Lewis Byrne.
He then found himself one on one with the goalkeeper and Jack Swindlehurst desperately trying to recover brought Byrne down just outside the area.
The referee Ben Cotton had no option but to send Swindlehurst off.
Captain Michael Gervin took the free kick which was heading for the Garstang top right hand corner, but a fantastic save by James Catlow resulted in a Borough corner.
It was from that corner that Byrne claimed his first of the night.
The ball was whipped into the box by Brad Hancock and with Garstang defenders unable to clear, Byrne pounced and scored from close range.
At this point the Borough had their tails up. Ryan Siddle was showing excellent qualities on the ball alongside Hewitt.
And his ability to spread the ball left and right was causing Garstang numerous issues and lots of running.
On 11 minutes Borough made it 2-0 It was Hancock again the provider with a inch perfect cross into the box from the left hand side.
Byrne was able to lose his man at the back post and from five yards out he struck the ball first time on the volley and beyond Catlow into the top corner.
Fantastic movement coupled with a sublime clinical finish.
Byrne was growing in confidence with every minute and the visitors
didn’t seem to have any answers for stopping him.
The work rate and application from Borough was poles apart from Saturday’s game at Ashton Town, and whatever was said prior to the match was definitely doing the trick.
Joey Fallon and Gareth Wager were constantly winning their aerial battles against the Garstang front pairing of Zach Clarke and Joe Noblett who this season have managed 35 goals between them.
Anthony Hall and Josh Walne were creating problems with quality link up play down the right, and on numerous occasions Hall was able to get to the byline with quick feet and trickery delivering dangerous balls into the areas.
On 29 minutes the ‘Wonder Kid’ Lewis Byrne made it 3-0 and celebrated his hat-trick.
Another good passage of play found Byrne in space inside the area on the left hand side.
And from a tight angle he managed to drill the ball hard and low inside
Catlow’s near post, a fantastic finish from a player who was signed from Manchester league side Avenue in the summer.
Garstang tried all they could to gather some sort of momentum as we approached half time, but after losing Jack Swindlehurst early on in the game it was always going to be an uphill struggle.
In the second half Garstang did rally the troops and create a few half chances.
Ric Seear was replaced by Zak Deaves in midfield and that seemed to help with the visitors seeing a little bit more of the ball in the final third.
The Garstang player manager Zack Clarke made a further two more changes by replacing himself and Andrew Murphy with Cameron Ross and Daniel Squires.
Borough also made changes with Ross Mallinson making a welcome return to the team in defence, but it would be Garstang who would claw a goal back. Sloppy defending from Borough invited Shaun Sailor to tap in from close range to make it 3-1
But instead of being happy to see out the game Borough went hunting for a fourth goal.
Byrne showed exactly why he is a hot property at this level with some brilliant individual skill and tenacity.
Callum Hewitt continued to drive forward in hope of getting himself on the score sheet, but it was Anthony Hall that would have the final say in making it 4-1 on a night where the young Borough were able to flex a bit of muscle and show their quality in front of yet another healthy crowd.
The Brian Boys Stadium is buzzing again.
This young group seemed to have captured the imagination of the Rossendale Valley. Support has doubled on last season and that is purely down to the hard work of the players and coaching staff.
Borough go again on Saturday at home to Bradford club Campion FC. kick off 3pm.