Cup specialists Berkhamsted have made it through to the last 32 of the Buildbase FA Vase for the second year running.
On Saturday they beat fellow SSML Premier Division side St Margaretsbury for the third time this season.
The foundations for the 3-1 victory were laid in the first half when Berko were well on top and the defence rarely troubled.
The first incident of note was when Steve Hawes, on his return after suspension, beat a couple of men in the penalty area and went for the ball that was going out of control into a tackle and the home side just got a free kick, despite shouting loudly for a card. Ashton Campbell was a danger man for Berko continually breaking down the middle at pace.
Dan Edwards was playing on the right of midfield for the first time this season and he took the opening goal well. He cut inside the penalty area and shot across Adam Seymour in the home goal and placed his shot in off the back post.
Campbell doubled Berko’s lead before the interval with a fine shot with Seymour claiming there was a handball in the build up.
There could have been more goals as Edwards fired a shot over the bar and Seymour tipped an Adam Mead free kick over the bar after Sean Givenhaud was booked for hauling down Campbell. Givenhaud did well to block Alex Campana too.
After the interval Dan Jones had a couple of shots blocked and Seymour used his legs well to deny Campana. Dan Weeks was instrumental in Berko’s third goal playing 1-2s and getting into the penalty area with Seymour kicking the ball on the goalline, but Campana was on hand to put the ball in the back of the net to make sure it counted.
With an eye on Monday’s cup-tie Berko used their substitutes and the home side got more into the game. Carl Tasker did well to tip a shot onto the cross bar and somehow a forward put shot from inside the 6 yard box over the bar. St Mags got a consolation goal with a super strike by Ryan Wade who blasted a great drive from outside the penalty area. Berko were still creating chances with substitute Tom Carter coming forward well to carve out more chances.
On Monday lunchtime Berko will learn which side in the southern half of England they face on January 7.
Berko: Tasker, Smaldone, Weeks, Stevens, Baldry, Mead, Edwards (Wilson-McLoughlin), Hawes, Campbell (Carter), Campana, Jones (Farrelly). Subs not used - L.Ladyman & O’Donovan.
Berko’s reserve side went down 5-0 at home to Dunstable in the Suburban Central division.
Berko can bring back Ashley Lewis after his one match ban and striker Matt Bateman who was cup-tied for the Vase game. The week ahead is busy with Monday, December 5 bringing a trip to Ryman League North side Ware in the second round of the Herts Senior Cup, Saturday is a home league game with Stotfold and Tuesday, December 13 is a trip to Oxhey Jets in the semi-final of the Herts Charity Shield.
On Saturday Berko’s reserve side go to Northwood in the Suburban League