Scarborough Town extended their lead at the top of the Humber Premier League Division One table to 14 points by destroying Malet Lambert’s unbeaten home record and romping to a 5-0 win.
With Ben Briggs, Kris Tate and Baz Gill unavailable, Town brought in Jason Darling for his first start in four months and Martyn Ferrey who had missed the last three games through injury.
Town went into the game aiming to score their 300th game in competitive football since 2008, and when it came after only five minutes it was a goal worthy of the occasion.
Sean Exley’s run was halted by a foul just outside the Malet penalty area, and Neil Fryirs stepped up to curl the ball over the wall and unstoppably into the top corner.
Malet Lambert played some neat one-touch football as Town accustomed themselves to the new 3G surface and keeper Darrol Lewis produced a fine save to a scorcher from Tom Cockerill.
Exley went clear of the home defence but was forced wide and could only shoot into the side netting, then Jamie Bradshaw held off a defender to release a powerful shot which was well saved by Dale Constable.
Town were then awarded a further free-kick for a push just outside the penalty area, and this time Exley shot low and hard but saw his effort whistle past the post.
Town went 2-0 ahead on 21 minutes, Ryan Jackson played the ball out of defence to Fryirs who expertly shielded the ball away from his marker and progressed towards the area before laying off a superbly-weighted pass for Bradshaw to run in and hit the ball across the keeper into the bottom corner.
Malet Lambert constructed a period of pressure but were thwarted by an efficient Town defence marshalled by their outstanding skipper Ricky Nock.
The home side’s best attempt was blocked by Lewis and cleared off the line by Tony Pickles, with Sam Hawksworth hitting the final chance over the bar.
The action soon returned to the other end, with an Exley pass reaching Fryirs who held off his man and worked his way into the area before being denied by a tremendous last-ditch tackle from full-back Ashley East.
Town had now adjusted to the pace of the pitch and an admirable passing move down the left ended when Bradshaw’s cross was clutched by Constable at full stretch.
Town then forced three corners in quick succession but could not get the vital touch in front of goal.
The second half began with Malet Lambert’s Danny Hudson going clear on the right and hitting the ball across goal but just wide, but that proved to be a rare moment of anxiety for the league leaders.
Ben Luntley was brought down to give Fryirs a chance to repeat his free kick wizardry, but on this occasion the effort was too high.
However a further free-kick on 49 minutes was driven goalwards by Martyn Ferrey and parried by Constable to where the livewire Luntley clipped the ball into the net for Town’s 3-0 lead.
Malet Lambert earned a corner which was glanced just wide by the head of their excellent centre-half Lee Macklin, but from then on the home team rarely had a sight of the Town goal.
On 57 minutes Ferrey split the defence with an astute pass to send Bradshaw away on the left, hitting the ball into the net at the near post despite the keeper’s best efforts.
Five minutes later the score was 5-0 when a swirling corner from Bradshaw was met by the leap of Jason Darling at the far post.
With the job done, boss Sean Rennison rang the changes and used his three substitutes to reshuffle the team but was unfortunate when injury forced Jackson to leave the field and Town to see out the final 20 minutes with 10 men.
However the visitors rarely looked perturbed as they extended their long unbeaten league run to 12 games and sent out a clear message to the rest of the teams in the league.
Town: Lewis, Jackson, Darling, Nock, Pickles, Patterson, Exley, Ferrey (Nelson 69), Luntley (Collins 69), Fryirs, Bradshaw (Thomas 69).