Boston United 5 Workington 3: Miller magic lifts the Pilgrims

Ricky Miller.
Ricky Miller.

Ricky Miller grabbed a 39-minute hat-trick as Boston United beat basement side Workington 5-3.

Returning hero Ryan Semple and hot-shot Marc Newsham also got in on the act as the Pilgrims scored five times for the second successive contest.

But like that previous victory, United made hard work of it at times.

Manager Dennis Greene opted to start with the same side which beat Vauxhall Motors 5-2 on Saturday.

That meant Scott Garner would again begin in attack, while Semple took his place on the bench alongside Charlie Ward, replacing the injured Ben Fairclough and Scott Dawson.

The Reds may have started the day three points adrift at the bottom of the Skrill North table, but the carved open the first of many chances in the fifth minute when David Lynch burst through on goal.

However, the legs of Lewis King denied him.

Miller put the Pilgrims in front with a deflected effort in the sixth minute, before Semple was handed his chance in the eighth minute, replacing the injured Indy Aujla.

United rode their luck when Rene Steer and King had to make clearances during an almighty goalmouth scramble, but slack defending allowed Dan Wordsworth to level in the 21st minute, sliding home from close range.

The Reds took a 27th-minute lead when Joe Jackson latched onto a through ball and slid past King from an acute angle.

But United were in front at the interval as Miller completed a first-half hat-trick.

He prodded home from close range after Garner set him free with 31 minutes on the clock, and completed his second treble for the club eight minutes later.

Ian Ross’ corner saw Carl Piergianni and Garner both have efforts blocked before Miller prodded home from close range.

There was still time for Workington to mount one final attack before the break, but Curtis Haley’s point-blank header was blocked by King.

It took just three minutes after the re-start for Workington to make it 3-3 when the Reds were awarded a penalty for a Piergianni tug in the box.

After Jackson picked himself back up he confidently sent keeper King the wrong way.

Level once again. the visitors looked to slow the game down at every opportunity - but Newsham and Garner both saw efforts deflected off target.

And Ben Milnes looked to have put United back in front with a sweet curling effort, but his strike just swerved off target as it looked set to nestle in the net.

However, that breakthrough finally came with 10 minutes remaining - and it was that man Semple.

Gambling on a high ball into the box he got goalside and casually prodded between the legs of Luke Simpson.

And four minutes later the game was safe as Marc Newsham netted his 103rd goal for the club from the penalty spot after Miller was tripped by Valter Fernandes.

UNITED: King, Marshall, Steer, Aujla (Semple 8), Garner, Piergianni, Ross, Milnes, Miller (Sanders 88), Newsham, Galinski; Subs (not used): Dongo, Ward, Vince.

WORKINGTON: Simpson, V. Fernandes, Wright, B. Fernandes, Wordsworth, Lynch, McKenna (Allison 85), Hindmarch (McLuckie 85), Jackson, Haley (Saidi 64), Skelton; Subs (not used): Murray.

Ref: Neil Hair.

Att: 797.