10:02PM, Saturday 08 May 2021
Sam Barratt in action against Wrexham last week. George Tewkesbury.
Hartlepool United 2, Maidenhead United 4
Sam Barratt netted a hat-trick as 10-man Maidenhead United handed Hartlepool United their first defeat in over five months at Victoria Park.
United produced one of their best away performances of the season, and took another scalp of a promotion contender, despite playing for more than half the game with only 10 men after Ryheem Sheckleford was shown a straight red card in the 42nd minute.
By that stage United already led 2-1 thanks to goals from Danilo Orsi-Dadomo, who calmly stroked the visitors ahead, and Barratt.
Both sides traded chances in the opening 10 minutes, with Rhys Oates forcing an early save from Rhys Lovett and Dan Sparkes firing an effort a whisker over the crossbar in the seventh minute.
Having gone three matches without a goal Orsi-Dadomo stroked home the Magpies' opener in the 15th minute, running onto Barratt's flick and slotting beyond Ravas on the angle.
Oates brought the sides level shortly before the half-hour mark, dancing through some flimsy Maidenhead tackles before planting the ball past Lovett. That goal appeared to hand Hartlepool some much needed impetus and they came close to a second six minutes later when Harvey Saunders was denied by the woodwork.
The action quickly swung back down the other end and Barratt finished off a sweeping move from the visitors to make it 2-1.
Sheckleford received his marching orders in the 42nd minute but United survived through to the break with their lead intact.
Maidenhead must have thought they'd have to withstand a second half barrage of pressure from Pools, but instead a quick-fire double from Barratt tipped the scales firmly in their favour.
He gave the visitors some breathing space in the 47th minute, latching onto Lovett's goalkick before slotting home to make it 3-1. Barratt then completed an impressive hat-trick in the 55th minute, picking out the bottom corner from distance to give the Magpies an unassailable lead.
Barratt was withdrawn late on for Alfie Egan, as was United's other goalscorer, Orsi-Dadomo, for Josh Kelly, and, despite conceding again in the 86th minute, when Danny Elliot found the net for the hosts, United held on comfortably to seal their first win in four matches.
Victory takes United on to 52 points, eight adrift of Notts County in seventh who they host at York Road on Tuesday evening.
“For him to come home and score as many goals as he has is such an achievement” @ryanpeyo87 spoke with us after this afternoon’s 4-2 away win at Hartlepool. #WeAreMaidenhead #HARvMAI pic.twitter.com/eqhuNvJoJS— Maidenhead United (@MUFCYorkRoad) May 8, 2021