Hungerford Town (0) 1 Bath City (2) 2 – Tuesday 25 April 2023 – Vanarama National League South – Bulpit Lane

Hungerford Town (0) 1 Bath City (2) 2 – Tuesday 25 April 2023 – Vanarama National League South – Bulpit Lane

Another brace from Scott Wilson helped City clinch success in their final away league match of the season.

The free-scoring forward made it five in three games and 22 for the season as a first half double give City a healthy advantage.

Already relegated Hungerford pulled one back through Michael Fernandes as they threatened more in the second half.

City missed numerous openings themselves but ultimately did more than enough to gain a positive result.

Wilson fired over from close range when Hungerford struggled to deal with a Joe Raynes long throw and Tom Smith’s effort was well blocked by Kyle Bailey as City asked some early questions.

Max Evans, Town’s 10th goalkeeper of the campaign, brilliantly repelled Dan Hayfield’s header after the returning Jordan Dyer helped on Luke Spokes’ delivery.

The Romans finally broke through on 31 minutes with a well-crafted goal.

Raynes released Hayfield down the right, his first time ball narrowly missed Smith in the middle but Elliott Frear was ideally placed to calmly roll it back to Wilson who turned and shot into the roof of the net from six yards.

Evans was fortunate to prevent a second when Frear’s trickery concluded with a fizzed cross for Hayfield to help back to Raynes, whose stinging shot from 10 yards was straight at the stopper who knew little about it.

The keeper’s fortunes worsened a few minutes later when Curtis Angell’s backpass took a huge bobble off a horribly bumpy surface, meaning Evans kicked thin air to the amusement of the City fans.

He was helpless to prevent a second on 38 minutes, though the pitch nearly rescued him.

James Morton’s free-kick was won in the air by Jack Batten and his attempt to hunt down the second ball saw him clumsily upended by Joe Boachie just inside the penalty area.

Wilson took the spot-kick and although it took a wicked bounce off a scuffed spot, it wrong-footed Evans and nestled in.

City began the second half all guns blazing as Morton slipped Hayfield through but his arrowing drive grazed the outside of the post and stayed out.

Hungerford halved the deficit with their first meaningful attack of the second half.

Angell’s ball over the top deceived Batten and Dyer allowing Fernandes to nip in and poke past the poorly positioned Max Harris from 15 yards.

The City keeper made up for it just past the hour with a magnificent reflex save. Former Romans loanee Ryan Jones smashed a free-kick which heftily deflected off the wall, forcing Harris to readjust and deflect onto the bar before Dyer hacked the rebound away from danger.

Unbeaten at home in seven, Town tried in vain to extend that run but they left gaps at the back.

Spokes slotted Wilson through on the counter and his attempt to nutmeg Evans just failed as the back of the keeper’s leg deflected it out for a corner.

Hayfield’s low effort crept just wide with Opi Edwards steaming in at the back post before Hungerford mounted one last attack in added time.

The energetic Jones freed up Joel Rollinson whose powerful attempt required Harris to dive full-stretch to his left and bat behind for a corner.

Despite sending every outfield player forward Town couldn’t make anything of it as City picked up their fourth successive win at Bulpit Lane and ended their away campaign on a high.

Att: 380

City’s Line-Up: Harris, Raynes, Dyer (Greenslade 68), Batten, Parselle (c), Hayfield, Smith, Frear (Edwards 80), Spokes, Wilson, Morton. Subs not used: Clarke, Ford.

Scorers: City – Wilson (31, pen 38); Hungerford – Fernandes (53)

City Bookings: Raynes (43), Parselle (47), Morton (63)

Officials: S Elson, J Welsh, I Khan