Shifnal United 0 Ludlow Town 5

AFTER missing a crucial penalty at Wem the previous weekend and striking a post in a scrappy first half on Saturday, Nathan Hodge hit top form in the second half of their game at Shifnal.

The versatile marksman broke the deadlock three minutes after the restart, and went on to score five goals in just 26 minutes, two with his left foot, two with the right, plus a header for good measure.

A competitive but scrappy first half was quickly forgotten as Town got into their stride after the turnaround.

They dominated the game after taking the lead and went on to record a big win which maintains their slender lead at the top of the Premier Division in the Shropshire County League.

Hodge opened the scoring from an accurate through-ball from Stu Millichamp, headed home from a Richie Evans’ cross five minutes later and then fired home just on the hour after his brother Aaron had created the chance.

After laying on the chance in the first half when Hodge struck the woodwork, Daniel Crowther, a contender for man-of-the-match himself, set up Hodge’s fourth goal on 69 minutes.

Hodge rounded off the purple patch when he finished from close-range after brother Aaron had forced a mistake from the Shifnal keeper.