Daggers hit Shrimps for six
Dagenham & Redbridge virtually guaranteed their spot in the play-off final with a 6-0 demolition of Morecambe.
Last Updated: 16/05/10 4:41pm
Josh Scott smashed four goals as Dagenham & Redbridge virtually guaranteed their spot in the League Two play-off final with a 6-0 demolition of Morecambe.
Scott hit four in 34 minutes, while Paul Benson landed the opener just four minutes in before adding another in the second half to add to a dismal afternoon at Victoria Road for Morecambe.
The Shrimps must now stage a remarkable comeback in the second leg at Christie Park on Thursday evening if they are to prevent John Still's men from reaching the Wembley decider.
Sammy McIlroy's visitors never seemed in contention and the Daggers dominated from the off as Danny Green produced a couple of long throws before Benson opened a fourth-minute lead.
Barry Roche had made a crucial save when Jon Nurse powered in a header off Abu Ogogo, but the ball ran free allowing Benson to fire into the empty net.
The Shrimps came close to an immediate reply when Garry Hunter chested down a long ball forward for veteran Paul Mullin to strike on the half-volley, but Tony Roberts grabbed a vital save.
The next threat was from the hosts as a Scott header looped over the crossbar, but the striker was more successful on his next attempt as he doubled the advantage in the 35th minute.
The goal was a result of a costly error from Roche as he scuffed his goal-kick to the feet of Scott on the halfway line, who withstood pressure from Jim Bentley to run in on goal and drive the ball hard and low into the net.
Green then fired wide as Morecambe's defence struggled to come to terms with the home side's assault, and the Daggers were firmly in charge when the whistle blew for half-time.
The Shrimps seemed more switched on early in the second period as Mark Duffy chased down the ball and crossed for Laurence Wilson, but the defender sent his effort wide.
The Daggers then landed their third in the 48th minute when a penalty was awarded after Green was tripped.
Roche saved captain Mark Arber's shot and Scott smashed his follow-up into the post, but finally hit his target from inside the busy goalmouth to mark his second goal.
Scott then completed his hat-trick in the 54th minute when Green swung a dangerous corner over from the right which he headed past the beleaguered Morecambe goalie.
The hosts went 5-0 ahead in the 66th minute after more dismal defending from the visitors. Right-back Andy Parrish botched a header to allow Benson a straightforward shot past Roche at his near post.
Scott capitalised on more sloppy defending in the 69th minute when he ran in from the left to clip the ball into the far corner, closing out a triumphant afternoon for the home side.