CURVIN Ellis marked his debut with a brace as Highgate recorded a comfortable 3-0 victory away at Coleshill Town in the Midland Premier Division.
The Solihull Moors loanee bagged two goals in the first half and Scott Turner scored a third late on to earn Gate their 11th win of the season on Tuesday night.
Manager Ashley Pulisciano was again forced to shuffle his pack and with Tom Lacey, Colby Lewis-McAdams and Ricardo Richards unavailable, Ellis came in up front alongside Lei Brown, while Aaron Brown returned from suspension and Trevor Edwards reverted to full back with Joseph Cole accompanying Turner at the heart of defence.
The visitors made a positive start at what has always been a happy hunting ground with Brown testing Paul Hathaway in the Coleshill goal early on but it was the hosts who created the first clear cut chance.
With 15 minutes played Tom Weale slipped a pass beyond the visitors’ defence only for Ricardo Reid to beat Bradley Catlow but drag a golden opportunity wide.
It was end-to-end stuff from both sides and the breakthrough eventually came on 22 minutes when Ellis converted Brown’s cross from close range.
With Gate having gained the initiative the goal was no more than they deserved and in 37th minute the lead was doubled thanks to Ellis again whose header off a Connor Mooney free kick floated beyond Hathaway’s reach and nestled into the left hand corner.
The home side made a strong start to the second half with Benjamin despatching a header over the bar and Catlow saved low down from Mykel Beckley.
Catlow was called into action again when tipping Craig Milligan’s long range effort behind for a corner and having survived what had been a difficult 15 minutes, Gate once again took a grip on proceedings.
Mooney looking to have squirmed his way through a packed defence only for Hathaway to smother the ball at the midfielder’s feet and moments later Mooney was not far off target when his 30 yard free kick found its way through a pack of players only for the ball to bobble tantalisingly beyond the far post.
Attenborrow came on for a first touch which presented Mooney with a chance to fire wide before the substitute had a hand in the third goal eight minutes from time as Brown touched the ball on and Turner fired home from close range.
In the dying minutes Coleshill’s Simon Cobourne was denied what by then would have been a consolation goal with a shot which smacked against the foot of the upright, but Catlow’s goal was to survive intact at the end of what had been an outstanding team display on an immaculate if unfamiliar artificial surface.
On Saturday Highgate are away to Continental Star who play their games at the home of Rushall Olympic and on Monday evening they travel to play Coventry Sphinx.