Deeping Rangers defeat Sleaford Town in the United Counties League Premier Division
Five goals, a much-needed clean sheet and a welcome three United Counties League Premier Division points proved ideal preparation for Deeping ahead of Saturday's FA Cup clash as they cruised past Sleaford Town on Tuesday night.
Scott Mooney bagged a brace with Jordan Macleod, Dan Jarvis and Tom Garrick also on target in a comfortable victory for the Clarets.
Deeping could realistically have at least doubled their final tally as they hit the woodwork three times, had numerous efforts cleared off the line while going close on several other occasions against a youthful Sleaford side still seeking their first points of the season.
Manager Michael Goode felt the victory 'ticked all the boxes' for his side who travel to Southern League Premier Division South side Hendon on Saturday aiming to reach the third qualifying round of the FA Cup for the first time in their history.
Goode said: "Given what we've got coming on Saturday then this game was probably just right for us.
"We've got three points which we haven't had for a while and we've kept a clean sheet which we haven't done in the league yet this season.
"We could have won by more. Luke Hunnings could have had hat-trick in the first half, their keeper has made a couple of good saves, we've hit the post twice and the bar once and they've blocked three or four on the line.
"It could have been five or six at half-time and then the game goes to pot even more.
"The most important thing was to get the result because we haven't been getting them. In addition to that we've scored a few goals and kept a clean sheet which we were desperately seeking.
"There were positives - Hunnings was good again, Sam Murphy has got through another 90 minutes and Matt Carter has had a full game after being really patient.
"Tom Garrick also got 90 minutes. He's not match sharp yet but it was good and Aaron Davies has missed a couple of games so he's got a full match in the tank. It ticked all the boxes for us."
Rangers made a couple of changes to the side that had drawn 3-3 at Cogenhoe on Saturday with Carter coming in for the unavailable Dan Flack while David Burton-Jones rested a groin injury.
Player assistant-boss Jack Marsden replaced Luke Andersen at left-back while Garrick came in for Charlie Coulson.
Rangers were rapidly out of the blocks and soon rained shots in on the Sleaford goal with Macleod seeing an early effort well saved by Sleaford custodian Regan Start.
Start then excelled to tip over a Hunnings header before Rangers had two efforts blocked on the line from the resultant corner.
Hunnings had another effort hacked off the line before Mooney was denied by Start who was down smartly to save.
They eventually shattered Sleaford's resistance after 11 minutes with Macleod producing a mesmerising run to weave past a sea of defenders before slotting home with aplomb.
Mooney had an effort from a Dan Banister free-kick ruled out for offside before he doubled the Clarets' lead after 23 minutes.
A slick passing move released Macleod down the left and his pinpoint cross was turned home by Mooney.
Macleod was denied a second by an excellent goalline block from Niall Parsons before Start tipped over again to deny Garrick.
Hunnings looped a header against the crossbar with Mooney's follow-up being blocked again on the line as the Clarets cranked up the pressure.
They made it three four minutes before half-time as Marsden's near post cross was slid home by the incoming Mooney.
It then took Deeping just 30 seconds of the second period to continue their onslaught with a fourth goal as Dan Jarvis slotted home a fine finish in the bottom corner of the Sleaford net.
With the points in the bag, Rangers took the chance to rest Jarvis and Macleod ahead of Saturday's cup clash with youth team skipper Ryan Olbromski coming on for his senior Clarets debut.
Olbromski looked lively with several searing raids down the left and played a hand in Deeping sealing their win with a fifth goal late on.
Garrick had seen a header rattle the post moments before Olbromski's cross picked out the Clarets marksman who headed home for the second successive game.
Garrick was thwarted again in injury-time by the overworked Start before Mooney missed a chance to complete his hat-trick with the final kick of the game as he fired wide from an Andersen cross.
Deeping: Elsom, Carter, Marsden (Andersen), Davies, Hunnings, Murphy, Banister, Jarvis (Simpson), Mooney, Macleod (Olbromski), Garrick. Subs not used: Coulson, Burton-Jones.