Keen hat-trick inspires Daventry to crucial win over Barton

THREE GOALS - Daventry striker Luke Keen
THREE GOALS - Daventry striker Luke Keen

A superb hat trick from striker Luke Keen extended Daventry Town’s winning home run to 11 games as they beat promotion rivals Barton Rovers 3-1 at Communications Park on Tuesday night.

The match was played in dreadful conditions, with rain pouring down throughout and making a muddy pitch even muddier!

Daventry Town boss Darran Foster delighted with his team’s performance.

“I thought the lads were superb, we really didn’t let Rovers play,” said Foster.

“We showed plenty of fighting spirit in some difficult weather conditions. Josh O’Grady and Ross Oulton caused them all kinds of problems throughout the match.”

Foster was also very pleased for Keen, and said: “The lad has worked really hard since joining the club and has scored goals from his first game.

“With Liam Dolman off the field due to a slight groin strain picked up during the warm up, I was not sure who would step up and take the penalty.

“Luke took the responsibility with plenty of confidence.

“We had missed several important penalties last season; it was nice to see this one go in!

Foster is hopeful captain Dolman will be back for the game against Aylesbury on Saturday.

“Bully pulled up during the warm up with a slight groin strain, but we are hopeful he will back to face Aylesbury or Marlow,” said the Town boss.

“Ollie Wilkinson has had six stitches to a wound near his left eye, he may have to wait for the stitches to settle for a week, before coming back into the side.”

Daventry wasted no time in putting Rovers on the back foot on Tuesday, taking the lead after only two minutes; a cross from Ryan Howell found Keen who smashed his shot in off the post, to give Town the early advantage in a match of great importance to both sides.

Rovers’ Jermaine Hall created two chances soon after, hitting a sizzling shot across the face of the Daventry goal, which no one managed to get on the end of, and another which scraped the top of the crossbar.

Rovers grabbed their equaliser from a free kick, Kevin Kilroy hit the ball straight through the hole in the defensive wall.

Daventry keeper Richard Morris managed to stop the shot, but failed to hold the ball and it fell obligingly on to the head of Joe Reynolds, who placed his header home.

There was brief stoppage in play, after a clash of heads, which troubled Wilkinson throughout the rest of the game, having to go off to clear blood from the wound which later required six stitches.

Keeper Morris was called into action to collect a dangerous ball down the middle, as Rovers put Town under some pressure, threatening to take the match to the home side.

A terrific run into the area then saw Oulton cross the ball to Keen whose header went narrowly past the post.

Daventry took the lead before the break, Rovers’ Liam McDevitt bringing down Ross Oulton as he went on another terrific run into the area. Keen stepped up to smash the penalty kick past keeper Kyle Forster to give Town a much-needed half time lead.

Daventry keeper Morris had to make an important save at his right hand post, whilst all around him were appealing for offside.

Keen scored his third goal on the hour, creating time to place his shot wide of Forster’s right, sealing a two goal lead for his side and the match ball for himself.

Rovers tried hard to get back into the game, but the Daventry defence were resolute.

Daventry had to work very hard for this victory in testing conditions, a win which takes them up to fourth place, one point behind Royston Town, but with four games in hand.

This Saturday Daventry entertain Aylesbury United. The Ducks currently sit in 10th position in the league.

They have a good away record this season, having lost just two of their 10 matches played on their travels!

Next Tuesday (Jan 21), Marlow are the opposition, they currently sit in 13th place, having won seven of their 21 matches, their last three outings included a 4-0 win at bottom of the table Ashford and a 1-1 home draw with Uxbridge.

Match Facts:

Daventry Town 3 Barton Rovers 1

Tuesday, January 14, 2013

Calor League Central Division One

at Communications Park, Daventry

Daventry: Richard Morris, Ollie Wilkinson, Josh Blake, Ashley Deeney, Marcel Simpson, Adam Confue, Ross Oulton (Beckley 84mins), Ryan Howell, Ashley Robinson (Lorraine 74mins), Luke Keen (Cross 79mins), Josh O`Grady

Scorers: Daventry: Luke Keen 2/42/60mins Barton Rovers: Joe Reynolds 16mins

Man of the Match: Luke Keen

In the book: Scott Cross 85mins

Attendance: 89