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Report, highlights & reaction:  Morecambe 4-1 AFC Wimbledon

Photo credit: Jack Taylor

A first ever senior hat-trick from Michael Mellon moved the Shrimps into the play off places following a 4-1 victory over AFC Wimbledon in League Two.

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It was nearly advantage Morecambe on 12 minutes when Joel Senior’s long throw was flicked on inside the box by JJ McKiernan, Michael Mellon got a touch before Jordan Slew’s attempt on goal was cleared by a visiting defender.

Al-Hamadi was pivotal in a chance for AFC Wimbledon on 22 minutes. After twisting and turning away from Morecambe defenders, his eventual shot was blocked at close range before Adam Smith was quick off his line to claim possession.

The away side were inches away from taking the lead at the half-hour mark as, after rising highest to meet the cross, Joe Lewis’ header whistled narrowly over Smith’s crossbar. 

Senior produced a piece of defensive magic to keep the game level on 41 minutes. Smith’s initial save from a powerful strike fell to the feet of Al-Hamadi, his rebound looked destined to find the back of the net, but there was Senior to somehow clear off the line.

The Shrimps struck twice just after half time to control the game.

From the whistle, Jordan Slew picked up possession down the left from JJ McKiernan and threaded a pinpoint ball through to Mellon who rounded Alex Bass and slotted home underneath two recovering defenders, just 30 seconds into the half.

Things got even better just four minutes later. Joel Senior danced his way into the penalty area, he was tripped but the ball ran loose and under pressure from McKiernan, Bass looked to clear, but the ball struck Lewis before rolling into the back of the net.

Two minutes before the hour mark, the Shrimps were awarded a spot kick after Omar Bugiel, who was booked moments earlier, brought down McKiernan as he looked to get the shot off. The Dons man avoided a red card as Mellon stepped up and made no mistake, sending his strike straight down the middle.

The visitors pulled one back on 72 minutes after Armani Little curled the ball beyond a diving Smith into the bottom corner.

Huseyin Blair looked to bend one into the top left corner with 10 minutes of normal time to play, but a vitally important Farrend Rawson header kept the visitors at bay.

With the second half minutes ticking by, substitute Connor Lemonheigh-Evans managed to meet a corner into the box with his head, but it lacked the power and direction to really test Smith, who claimed the ball comfortably.

The points were confirmed two minutes from time with another blistering counter attack. Slew picked up a pass from Yann Songo’o, drove down the left and laid the ball into Max Melbourne, who forced Bass into a close range save before Mellon was on hand to convert the rebound, completing his richly deserved hat-trick, and making it ten for the season.

The Shrimps travel to Barrow on Tuesday evening (7:45pm kick off), knowing that victory would move Morecambe into the League Two automatic promotion places.

Morecambe: A Smith, Tutonda, Rawson ©, Songo’o, Bloxham, Mellon (Walker, 90+5’), McKiernan (Brown, 90+8’), Senior, Slew, Stokes (Melbourne, 83’), Davenport (C Smith, 90+8’).

Subs not used: Pedley, Dobson.

Goals: Mellon (46’, 61’, 88’), Lewis OG (51’).

Bookings: Davenport, Tutonda.

AFC Wimbledon: Bass, Reeves ©, Johnson, Tilley, Al-Hamadi, Neufville (Lemonheigh-Evans, 73’), Little, Bugiel (Davison, 61’), Currie, Lewis, OGundere (Biler, 62’).

Subs not used: Tzanev, Pearce, Ball, Sasu.

Goals: Little (72’).

Bookings: Bugiel.

Attendance: 4,453 (356 away).

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