McCollin brace first Ks to second
9:23am Monday 15th October 2012 in Sport
Assistant manager Mark Hams Kingstonian's 157-mile coach journey to Lowestoft Town was a help rather than a hinderence as a Ander McCollin brace helped secure a 3-1 win at the bookies' pre-season title favourites, writes Simon Grier.
The trip to Norfold isby far the longest Ks will face all season, but it didn't faze them as they hit the ground running with McCollin's early opener setting them on their way to three points.
"The journey went quickly because the whole atmosphere was very relaxed", explained Hams.
" Everyone was having a real good laugh and when you consider how the week started at Wealdstone [a 5-2 defeat, having led 2-0] it was a massive contribution to why we dug in and played so well today."
The league's leading scorer McCollin struck first with a powerful shot in just the tenth minute after a training ground set piece routine.
But the most memorable effort was Ks' second, a 25-yard left-footed volley from Matt Pattison that gave Trawlerboys goalkeeper Jake Jessup no chance.
Its timing made it all the more important, coming immediately after Joe Francis had wiped Ks' lead out by turning in a rebound following a Lowestoft corner.
It was also right before the half-time interval, leaving a frustrated home side to rue their missed opportunity.
Ks defended their lead in solid fashion after the break, looking a different side from that which had been over-run in midfield just five days earlier.
Lowestoft struggled to create chances and when they did, Robert Eagle and Jack Defty found Rob Tolfrey equal to their efforts.
Ks wrapped the game up eleven minutes from time when McCollin's pace helped him latch onto a ball over the top and slide it past Jessup.
Hams praised the finish saying, "If you're through one on one with the 'keeper and you keep it low you'll score eight times out of ten. It was calm and clinical.
"He was carrying an injury as well so he's done really well to dig in one more time and get the third goal for us."
Hams was also full of praise for Simon Huckle and Matt Somner in central midfield and centre-backs Gary MacDonald and Kieron Murphy:
"The centre of the park won us the game today. We will score goals but not conceding them has been an issue in the recent past.
"The central core of the team was very secure and denied them space to be inventive. Lowestoft are a good side and that area was vital for us today.
"It's a huge result for us, particularly after what happened on Monday, and the players deserve massive credit for that."
Ks travel to Folkestone Invicta on Wednesday in the League Cup before resuming their league campaign at home to Carshalton Athletic on Saturday.