Baitup Hits Four In United Rout
By Dean Allchin
Four goals from Liam Baitup have helped Eastbourne United AFC to defeat Wick & Barnham United 5-0 at The Oval
The victory lifts United up to 7th in the Macron Store SCFL Premier Division and is a fifth consecutive win.
The United starting XI showed two changes from Saturday's victory at Broadbridge Heath with Zak Dove
taking the place of Aaron Filsell
, while Callum Christie made his first start in goal since the end of October.
United made a blistering start to the contest and found themselves ahead in under a minute - 47 seconds to be precise as Bailo Camara stole a march on the visiting defence to glance home a Dave Smart corner.
Camara turned provider with eight minutes on the clock as his deft touch found himself some space to produce a pinpoint cross for the Baitup who placed a headed effort out of the reach of Billy Nash and into the far corner of the goal.
A diagonal ball saw Morgan Forry in behind the United defence, but the Wick frontman could only fire over when well placed.
United made it three with under 20 minutes played when Camara again crossed, this time with Dove seeing an effort rebound off the post before Baitup calmly lofted the ball into the far corner.
Nash was by far the busier of the two 'keepers and produced an impressive close range save following a Smart free kick and also reacted well to deny Baitup.
Only the woodwork could deny United a fourth as Adam Davidson
rattled the crossbar with a powerful header after a Smart corner.
The second half started in much the same vain and the fourth goal did come as Baitup completed his second hat-trick in a week as he rifled home a half volley after a surging run by Dean Stevens
Wick were dealt a blow on the hour when Nash was substituted due to injury, with top scorer Dan Simmonds replacing him between the sticks.
Simmonds saved with his feet to deny Dove and Pete Cooper, before tipping a speculative cross-cum-shot from Liam Painter
over the bar.
On 90 minutes, Simmonds was beaten as a Painter free kick from the left byline was arched goalwards with Baitup loitering at the far post to head home from close range and seal a comprehensive victory for Tobi Hutchinson's men