PICKERING Town closed the gap on leaders Cleethorpes Town after handing out a five-goal thrashing to basement side Barton Town Old Boys.

In truth, the Pikes could have hit double figures against a very poor side but wasted a number of goalscoring opportunities.

The ‘Old Boys’ have fallen on hard times this season, losing their management team and several players in pre-season, and now relying on youngsters or older players who have seen better days.

The Pikes were 2-0 up after just eight minutes. Striker Billy Logan opened the goalscoring in the seventh minute and Alex Robinson doubled the lead moments later after good work by Logan and Eddy Birch.

The Pikes remained on top but chances were wasted by Logan, whose shot from 18 yards was blocked on the line, and Ryan Cooper whose effort went over the crossbar.

The Pikes scored their third goal after 38 minutes when Logan latched onto a long ball and lobbed the advancing goalkeeper Rick Watson.

A minute before the interval, the Pikes took a four-goal lead. Cooper’s initial effort was blocked but Nick Thompson followed up to score with a well struck 18 yard shot.

The second half proved a tame affair. Bissett shot wide, Birch hit the inside of the post, and Cooper mis-kicked after being set up by Ryan Blott.

Barton enjoyed a good five minute spell where Rob Petch shot wide and goalkeeper Toby Wells produced a good save to deny Fisher. A free-kick from Fisher sailed just over the crossbar and Tom Waudby headed over at a corner.

Barton were reduced to ten men on 73 minutes when Chris Fairhurst was sent off for violent conduct.

The last five minutes saw Ged Dalton head wide for the Pikes and Blott shoot wide.

However, substitute Lewis Taylor made it 5-0 in stoppage time with a fine solo goal – beating two defenders before shooting home. Logan might have completed his hat-trick but shot wide at the death.

Pickering: Wells, Cooper, Danby (Ingram 76), Chipps, Bissett, Tilsley, Thompson, Birch (Taylor 67), Blott, Logan, Robinson (Dalton 63). Substitute not used: Marshall. Attendance: 66.