NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Hat-trick hero Prince is the St Neots Town king in FA Cup replay success
- Credit: Archant
Manager Marc Abbott hailed man of the moment Prince Mutswunguma after St Neots Town stormed to FA Cup success last night.
The attacking ace hit a hat-trick to inspire a 3-1 victory against local rivals Godmanchester Rovers in a preliminary round replay.
Saints' reward is almost £3,000 in prize money and a home tie against higher-level Biggleswade Town this Saturday.
It also represented a rapid upturn in home form for Saints, who had leaked five goals in both league outings on their own turf this season.
"Prince lit up the ground with some fantastic match-winning moments," said Saints chief Abbott.
"It was a professional and united display featuring a lot of key performances.
"The support was also great and we thank everyone who got behind us throughout the game.
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"We know we'll be underdogs on Saturday but that means the pressure is on Biggleswade who have had mixed results so far this season."
There was a lively start with three in seven minutes early on last night.
Mutswunguma broke the deadlock with a long-range blast after seizing on a poor defensive clearance, but Rovers, who were without leading scorer James Hall, quickly hit back.
Jack Chandler, who initially joined Saints in the summer only to then make a U-turn and remain at Rovers, pounced on a fumble from keeper James Philp to level.
However, parity lasted for only 90 seconds as Mutswunguma restored Saints' advantage with a classy chipped finish.
That was the way it stayed until the 72nd minute when Mutswunguma completed his hat-trick and sealed Saints' passage.
A terrific save from Rovers keeper Niall Conroy denied Jake Kerins a fourth Saints' goal, but they had already done enough to advance.
It was a hard exit to take for Rovers boss Ollie Drake, who said: "We're very bitter to be out as we should have tied things up in the first game at our place.
"Our finishing wasn't good enough again last night and we didn't really get going until we were chasing the game."