MOOROOLBARK bounced back to form with a 7-0 demolition of bottom-placed Brandon Park at a boggy Freeway Reserve on Saturday.
The eighth-placed Barkers desperately needed a win after losing 3-1 to Pines last week and didn't take long for them to wrestle the ascendancy.
On the quarter hour, a push in the back on Brechan Adams led to a free-kick 25 yards out. Dube lined up, and miss-hit the ball perfectly into the corner of the net for the opener. The home side then had a free kick of their own, which Barkers allowed to bounce dangerously close to goal before Reuben Clausen got rid of it.
Barkers were banging on the door, and forced it open again just before the break with a lovely passing move when Nhlanhla Dube found Adams on the edge of the penalty area.
He had to muscle off a defender, then curled the ball round the keeper and onto the far post. The rebound fell to Doughty, who buried it in the near corner for 2-0.
Four minutes later, Christoforou attacked, and found Adam Doughty, who had held up his run perfectly. As the Brandon Park defence stood still appealing for offside. Doughty ran on to hit a low shot past the keeper for 3-0. Clausen sprayed the ball out right for Doughty, who beat one man, then took the ball wide of the keeper and scored from a tight angle for his hat-trick.
Barkers were all over Brandon Park like a rash, and four minutes later, Doughty found Liam Swaine on the right wing. He beat one man and crossed, but the ball ran past the far post to another Barker, who put the ball back in the danger zone for Shields to smash the ball in the roof of the net from close range for 5-0.
Another five minutes later, and Barkers were at it again. Swaine put a long ball through to Adams, whose shot was parried by the keeper to Christoforou. He put the ball back in the box for Doughty to get his fourth from close range, for 6-0.
No male has ever scored five in a game for Barkers, but with 11 minutes to go, Doughty was clean through, but was fouled. The resulting free kick was taken by Verniers, whose effort is now the subject of a WorkCover claim on the nearby building site.
Finally, Christoforou crossed from the left byline to set up Darren McCandless at the far post for 7-0. Finally, with two minutes remaining, Dube showed what happens when he hits a free kick correctly. The ball hasn't been seen since.
■ Mooroolbark women defeated North Caulfield 3-0 last Monday to get their season back on track after a disappointing draw with Bayswater Strikers. Amy D'Ortenzio came back into the team and needed just one goal to break the record for most goals scored in a season; it didn't take her long. Monique Nogueira allowed the goal machine to go on and slot past the keeper for 1-0 to beat the 36-year-old record held by Graham French and equalled by Brechan Adams.
In the 71st minute a mistake was seized upon by Schubert, who was promptly chopped down in the box, winning a penalty for Barkers.
D'Ortenzio stepped up, lashed her shot high to Blau's right for 2-0, and Barkers finally had breathing space.
Mooroolbark then defeated Noble Park 5-2 at Knox Regional Football Centre on Friday night, because Esther Park was waterlogged.
Barkers ran out comfortable winners in a match marked by yet another hat-trick from the goal machine.