A DAVE Swarbrick hat-trick helped Lancaster City thrash Buxton 5-1 in their final pre-season game at Giant Axe on Saturday.
Joe Bunney and substitute Jordan Bowen added the other two goals in a game the Dolly Blues dominated from start to finish and in truth could have won by even more.
Buxton, who play their football a league above Lancaster, played an experimental side and were without a number of first-team players.
The home side started very brightly and didn’t have to wait long for the opening goal.
Just ten minutes in the dangerous Zach Clark picked up the ball half-way inside the Buxton half and drove into the penalty area past Buxton’s John Ollerenshaw, who clipped the City winger and referee Steve Taylor immediately pointed to the spot.
Swarbrick blasted the penalty into the top right-hand corner sending Buxton keeper John Stanway the wrong way.
City continued to dominate possession after the goal but struggled to create many chances from open play.
Skipper Neil Marshall headed over a Gavin Clark cross after 20 minutes and the hosts had to wait until the 35th minute for their next meaningful chance.
After Buxton failed to clear a Neil Wainwright corner, centre back Danny Gregson had his legs taken from underneath him after a neat turn and again Taylor had no option but to point to the spot.
Swarbrick again made no mistake from 12 yards, side footing the ball into the same corner as his first spot kick.
Seven minutes later and Hoyle’s men went three up. Bunney, playing as the lone striker, beat the offside trap after being put through by Zach Clark neatly slotted the ball past Stanway from 12 yards out.
The Dolly Blues so nearly made it four on the stroke on half-time when Swarbrick’s vicious volley from a Bunney knockdown, was excellently saved by Stanway.
Lancaster started the second half the way they ended the first. Swarbrick almost completed his hat-trick three minutes in when he received the ball from Dan Parkinson, took on a Buxton defender only to see his 15-yard drive saved by Kenway’s right leg.
Zach Clark then went close after being put through by assistant player-manager Michael Stringfellow, his shot was well-saved by Kenway who was keeping the score respectable for the visitors.
Stringfellow was next to be denied by the Buxton keeper who somehow kept out his header from a Swarbrick cross.
The inevitable fourth eventually came for Hoyle’s men 25 minutes from time after another well-crafted move. Parkinson played a lovely ball through to Zach Clark whose driven cross could only be parried by the keeper into the danger area where Bowen had the easy task of putting the ball into the unguarded net.
Four became five just three minutes later when Kenway could only parry substitute Christian Sawicki’s 25-yard strike and Swarbrick was there to pick up the pieces and complete his hat-trick.
The only blemish on City’s performance was the late consolation goal they conceded, Buxton substitute Josh Bennett hitting a superb half-volley into the top right hand corner giving Joe Wheeler no chance.
Lancaster City: Holden (Wheeler 67, 6) 6, Parkinson 7, Gregson 8, Marshall (Hudson 55, 6) 7, G Clark 7, Stringfellow (Sawicki 63, 7) 7, Wills (Bowen 55, 7) 6, Wainwright 9, Swarbrick 8, Z Clark 8, Bunney (Kilifin 55, 6) 6.