Harrogate Town gave themselves a great boost for the upcoming play-offs,when they trounced Curzon Ashton 5-0,and clocked up a century of league goals in the process.
Simon Weaver rang the changes,resting several regulars and giving a number of fringe players a chance to impress.
It was one way traffic as Harrogate dominated the first half and in the first few minutes, both George Thomson and Mark Beck went close with headers.
It took almost twenty minutes for Curzon to make a mark, with Dan Shaw releasing Ben McKenna who found Joe Guest with a clever flick,but the raid broke down on the edge of the area.
Normal service was soon resumed and Cameron Mason had to tip a Jordan Thewlis effort over the bar when he met a Beck header from Warren Burrell’s cross.
On twentyfour minutes Town’s endeavour paid off when John McCombe’s excellent through ball was crossed to the far post by Thewlis and Dom Knowles headed in.
Curzon almost hit back before the break after Tyrell McKenzie was given too much room by the Town defence,and he unleashed a tremendous drive which left Joe Cracknell clutching at thin air before crashing onto the crossbar.
It took Town only fourteen seconds of the second half to double their lead when Knowles beat the offside trap and raced onto Jack Emmett’s through ball to sidefoot past Mason.
Four minutes later,Knowles netted his hat trick after Cracknell’s long clearance was headed on to him by Beck and he raced past Jonathan Hunt, to once again,beat Mason.
This was Town’s ninety-eighth league goal,but their quest for a hundred looked remote when Knowles hit the post with a minute left.
However, Town had other ideas and roared on by yet another four figure crowd,they scored twice in stoppage time.
Firstly, Jake Wright was barged down inside the area and after consulting his assistant, Referee Dean Hulme, awarded Town a penalty.
Knowles stepped up to the plate and easily beat Mason from the spot.
With only seconds left, Thomson found Wright on the right flank and his centre reached Knowles beyond the far post and he rifled in to score his and Town’s fifth.
Cracknell,Burrell(c),(Fallowfield 60),Swain,Kerry (Wright 60),Lees,McCombe,Thomson,Agnew,Beck,Knowles,Thewlis(Emmett 37).
Unused subs,Belshaw,Falkingham. Booked Kerry, Att.1170
Scorer Knowles,24,46,50,90,90. Man of the Match Knowles
Mason,Baillie,Regan(Thornley66),Hunt(c),Shaw,Dunwoody(Marshall 55),Guest,Beesley,McKenzie(Brooke 77),McKenna,Baker.
Unused subs,Cark,Wharton. Booked Hunt,McKenna.
Referee D Hulme
By John Harrison.