Marks hat-trick inspires Urchins to victory at Harlow

PUBLISHED: 17:07 29 December 2018 | UPDATED: 17:08 29 December 2018

Sean Marks of Hornchurch (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Sean Marks of Hornchurch (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo +44 1376 553468

Bostik Premier Division: Harlow Town 2 AFC Hornchurch 4

AFC Hornchurch capped off 2018 with a 4-2 victory over Harlow Town after coming back from 2-0 down early on.

A hat-trick from Sean Marks and another goal from Jay Porter sealed the three points for the Urchins at The Harlow Arena.

Manager Mark Stimson made three changes to his side that lost 2-1 to Brightlingsea Regent last weekend with striker Sean Mark returning from injury, Jamie Hursit and Lewwis Spence coming back into the starting line-up.

Brother George and Ronnie Winn dropped to the bench along with Nana Boakye-Yiadom.

The hosts threatened in the early stages of the Bostik Premier Division encounter with the first real chance coming in the seventh minute when striker Tom Hitchcock fired over the bar after snatching at a bouncing ball on the edge of the box.

Hitchcock then got another golden opportunity as the former MK Dons man put his foot through the ball but it spun into the hands of goalkeeper Callum Chafer.

The Blackburn Rovers Academy product continued to cause danger as he cut into the box and laid the ball off to Matthew Foy.

But the midfielder’s effort went flying over the bar in the 12th minute.

Three minutes later Urchins could have gone 1-0 up against the run of play as midfielder Lee Prescott had the ball roll across the box to his feet.

The former Margate player managed to scuff his shot from point blank range with no pressure on him.

The Hawks Drew Richardson then had a dig but his effort was blocked by Hornchurch defender Alex Bentley.

In the 24th minute George Purcell let fly from distance but his effort went spiralling over the bar.

Harlow soon began causing the Urchins problems once again with Emile Acquah bringing down Kenzer Lee, but play went on and the ball fell to Richardson, but his shot was dragged wide in the 30th minute.

The hosts did eventually break the deadlock in the 37th minute as Hitchcock played in Acquah who chipped the ball over Chafer to make it 1-0.

Four minutes later Foy made it 2-0 to Harlow as he fired a low hard shot past Chafer.

Hornchurch then desperately looked to claw one back and they did In stoppage time as Taylor Miles delivered a free-kick, which was dropped by Bexon, and poked home by Sean Marks.

The hosts got off to a strong start in the second-half as Hitchcock fired wide after Foy done well to win the ball from Urchins left-back Jay Porter in the 48th minute.

Shortly after Porter raced down the left flank and whipped the ball in but it just evaded everyone and went out for a goal kick.

In the 64th minute Porter levelled the score as he nodded home a George Saunders cross after it was flicked on by a Harlow defender.

A minute later the former Maidenhead United striker Marks headed the ball in at the back post after a cross in from Porter to give the visitors a 3-2 lead.

Stimson’s side kept piling on the pressure, with Purcell being brought down on the edge of the box.

Miles stepped up and fired the free-kick through the wall but it whistled wide of the post in the 74th minute.

Urchins Marks then netted his hat-trick as he side-footed home a cross from Saunders after the winger out paced the Harlow defence.

The 33-year-old then jumped the gate to celebrate with the Hornchurch faithful after making it 4-2.

Harlow Town: Bexon, Plumpton (Moanda 75), Kissi (Watkins 79), Rodgers, Hastings, Simms, Foy, Richardson, Acquah, Hitchcock, Koranteng.

Unused subs: Vaughan, Adaje, Clarke.

AFC Hornchurch: Chafer, Hursit (R.Winn 62), Bentley, Lee, Porter, Prescott, Miles, Spence (G.Winn 62), Saunders, Purcell, Marks (Stimson 88).

Unused subs: Clark and Boakye-Yiadom.

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