The hunt is on for a Spalding United league and cup double.
The Tulips made short work of Boston United on Tuesday night in the semi final of the Lincolnshire County Cup, beating their higher level opponents 3-0 to reach the final for the second successive time.
They will face either Cleethorpes or Scunthorpe in the final.
“It was a great win,” said manager Elliot Sandy. “Boston played quite a young side with a few first teamers but they train every day and you could see they were really sharp and played some really good football.
“It was a different game to what we are used to in our league.
“We had a really good shape, we were organised and we did it really well.
“We got an early goal and then it was quite an even game as they played a lot of football, but we kept our shape.
“In the second half we got better as the game went on and deserved the win.
“A clean sheet is great and three goals from three different goal scorers.
“The whole squad was used so it was an ideal workout.
“We’re looking forward to a cup final.
“Last year was a really tough game for us but we’ll be going to win and go there and enjoy it.”
Spalding took the lead as early as the seventh minute when Riley O’Sullivan’s strong run ended with him squaring to Tyler Winters six yards out who spun and fired home.
On a heavy pitch there were few chances for the rest of the half though Winters put another effort just wide.
Boston struggled to create chances and the Tulips thought they’d added to their lead in the second half when O’Sullivan raced onto a through ball and finished only to see the offside flag raised.
Spalding had to wait for the 81st minute for the second, but a brilliant team move was worth the wait.
Some excellent passing ended with James dancing round the keeper and a defender before finishing from close range.
It was 3-0 late on when Dan Sweeney robbed a defender to put Sam Bennett through on goal who unselfishly fed it back to Sweeney to net.
The cup win came on the back of a 4-0 triumph over Gresley in the Pitching In Northern Premier Division on Saturday to maintain the pressure on leaders Harborough Town.
Spalding dominated against Gresley, Bennett and Sweeney both going close before Nathan Stainfield gave them a 15th minute lead heading home from Hilliard’s ball in.
Gresley goalkeeper Louie Turner put in a fine performance to ensure it wasn’t a cricket score, in fact Spalding had to wait until shortly after half time to double the lead.
Again it was Stainfield who netted with his head.
The introduction of O’Sullivan from the bench led to two goals in the final ten minutes to kill the game off.
Firstly he netted from the spot after Winters was fouled in the box.
Then with four minutes remaining he netted a fine strike to make it 4-0.
“We applied ourselves well, played some good stuff at times and created a lot of chances that on another day we could have won by six or seven,” said Sandy. “That’s no disrespect to Gresley, but their keeper made many saves.
“We hadn’t been creating as many chances as we were doing earlier in the season, so we tweaked things a little bit and it seemed to work for us.
“Everyone seems to be winning at the top end but we’ve got to keep winning, stop looking at other people and get ourselves in order.”
Tulips v Gresley: Breedon, Draper, Warburton, Walker, Stainfield, Freeman, Barker, Sherif, Sweeney, Bennett, Hilliard. Subs: Snedden, Curtis, Winters, Graham, O’Sullivan.
Tulips v Boston Breedon, Clifton, O’Sullivan, Walker, Stainfield, Cartwright, Barker, Tanor, Winters, Graham, Curtis. Subs: Snedden, Draper, Warburton, Sherif, Hilliard, Sweeney, Bennett.