BEN Mather grabbed a sensational hat-trick as Mirfield Stags swept aside play-off hopefuls Skirlaugh Bulls to earn a second-successive Yorkshire Men’s League victory.
Mather bagged tries either side of the interval, with the Stags coming from behind to seal a terrific 28-14 victory on away soil.
It was the home side who started the brighter as they took the lead on eight minutes. Lewis Hames crossed the whitewash after the centre found room to touchdown on the left side.
Halfback Bradley Sprices converted and Skirlaugh moved 6-0 in front.
The Stags responded almost immediately, though, with a score just four minutes later.
Prop Mather shoved off one defender before charging over the line, however, Ben Cole was unable to convert.
Mirfield continued their momentum as they moved 10 points in front, courtesy of two quick-fire tries.
Mather added his second of the game as the front-rower drove over beneath the posts, after Chris Aked was held up on the right flank.
Three minutes later, Scott Bradley, making a rare appearance at hooker, continued his try-scoring form following his double last weekend.
Cole was easily able to add the extras on both occasions, putting the visiting Stags two score clear at 16-6.
Skirlaugh stemmed the tide of Stags pressure with a try late in the half as Jordan Branon latched onto a quick pass by Sprices.
But Mirfield reaffirmed their 10-point cushion just three minutes into the second period with a sensational third touchdown from Mather.
The prop broke the Bulls’ line on the halfway line and, despite having men in support, Mather sprinted to score in the corner and seal a try-of-the-season contender.
After a long period of goal-line defending from Mirfield, a comfortably converted penalty by Cole on the hour mark put the visitors two scores clear.
Skirlaugh did manage to turn their substantial second-half territory into points late in the half as winger Jon Greendale dived over.
But Mirfield wrapped up a hard-fought victory with a try in the last play of the game as Phil Shotton broke through the Skirlaugh line and scored under the posts.
Shotton, from bang in front of the uprights, converted his own try to seal a tremendous Stags success.