Uppingham Town beat Stilton in Peterborough League Premier Division match
Uppingham Town sent out an emphatic statement of intent as they hit title rivals Stilton for six with a clinical display on Saturday.
Rob Forster fired a hat-trick as the Peterborough League Premier Division leaders ran out 6-1 winners against their second-placed visitors at Tods Piece.
The super success means Town are now five points clear at the top of the table with nine matches of the season remaining as they netted five times in the second period despite playing into the strong head-wind.
Manager Paul Sheehan said: "We were clinical in the second half and we were really pleased with the win because we knew that it was a big game.
"We always looked a threat, even when they had more of the ball in the second half.
"We are in a good position in the league now, but there's still a long way to go with a lot of tough games to come up.
"But the reason we're in this position is because of the effort that we're putting in each week. We try as hard as we can and we need to keep doing that."
The match was played in testing conditions as storm arwen swept through the area but, despite Town having the elements in their favour in the opening period, they only had one goal to show for it.
Forster had the best chance midway through the first half as he controlled a high ball with a terrific touch and went past a defender but then over-ran it and Stilton goalkeeper Dave Beeny came out to save.
Town hit the front 10 minutes before the break as Forster fizzed in a free-kick from out wide that Beeny palmed away after it had eluded everyone in the box and Callum O'Berg pounced to fire home a fine finish from an acute angle.
Their concerns about only having a one-goal lead at the break then eased straight after the restart to the second period as Town had scored within 30 seconds of the kick-off.
They pushed forward and Martin Turiccki sent Jordan Neil away who firstly saw his shot saved by Beeny with the rebound being blocked on the line before Forster side-footed home Town's second goal.
However, the deficit was halved within a minute as Stilton worked a good move through the middle and Kyial West finished well past Tom Hubbard.
Town regained their composure though and scored their third after 55 minutes when Forster cut inside the box and drilled home a superb finish.
Stilton still enjoyed plenty of possession but Hubbard was rarely called into action despite the visitors pushing more players forward.
Town were then able to exploit the gaps at the back and added a fourth when Forster brought a long ball under control before letting it bounce and then unleashing an audacious effort from 35 yards that flew over Beeny and into the net.
Two goals in the final 15 minutes then sealed Town's success as Turiccki fired home in a crowded penalty box from Josh Porter's flick-on after a free-kick had been hit into the area.
Neil then completed the scoring in style as he collected a pass from Porter 20 yards out before curling home a top-drawer strike into the far corner.
Sheehan added: "The wind was blowing straight down the pitch and I didn't think a 1-0 lead at half-time was going to be enough.
"They sat in and we played at quite a slow tempo which suited Stilton. We needed to almost set the tempo because we were in a hurry to get more than one goal.
"But, in the second half, we played really well. We played some good football and kept it on the deck by knocking it around."
Town are now in derby action this weekend as they travel to face Stamford Lions at Borderville with the Town manager looking to complete the double over brother James following their 2-1 home win at the end of September.