A five-star performance led to Carshalton gatecrashing into the play-off positions, writes James Barrett-Sterling.
Carshalton Athletic 5 - 1 Wingate & Finchley
Bostik Premier League
Saturday 6th April 2019
Last five results: WWWLW
Our ' Man of the Match': Luke Read
Billy Bishop was restored in goal while Jacob Mendy, Peter Adeniyi and Omar Koroma were all handed starts.
The game started fairly quietly with Mendy's ninth minute shot into the side-netting the only effort of note.
But both sides had then had decent chances by the quarter hour - Intri Rapia fired wide when well placed on the edge of Carshalton's box, while Ricky Korboa forced Shane Gore into a full stretch save from 30 yards and the keeper recovered to brilliantly to block Koroma's follow-up.
Koroma did have the ball in the net on 18 minutes but his back-post header was ruled out for an offside, then Tommy Bradford was denied by Layne Eadie as he took aim from 15 yards.
But the deadlock was finally broken on 25 minutes as Bradford played in a corner delivery, which was won by Korboa forcing Gore into yet another save, and Harry Ottaway crashed a near-post header past Gore for his sixth of the season.
Ottaway was involved again just after the half hour as Daniel Pappoe nodded a deep corner back by the penalty spot and the goalscorer acrobatically shot just over the bar.
Wingate defender Claudio Vilcu had an eventful five minutes as, firstly, he was cautioned for scything down Korboa. The visitors then won a free kick on 38 minutes which Sean Cronin headed down and Vilcu smashed a shot over from about six yards.
Carshalton responded with a neat build up that got Bradford a glimpse of goal but his effort was blocked and Korboa's follow-up was saved by Gore.
A talking point occurred on 43 minutes as Bradford went on a fine run past several opponents before Vilcu bundled him over a yard outside the box, but the referee didn't produce another card for the defender.
But the Robins doubled their lead before the break as Ottaway took a clearance down, spun and played a lofted ball over halfway for Korboa to chase. He got in front of Eadie and managed to steer the ball past Gore from 15 yards.
HALF-TIME: 2 - 0
Carshalton kept on the front foot after the break and Mendy teed up Ottaway on 57 minutes but he fired wide from 18 yards.
But a third goal did arrive just after the hour as a neat move involving Adeniyi, Bradford and Korboa got Ottaway away down the right and his low cross was turned into his own net by the unfortunate Alieu Njie.
That sparked something in Wingate however and, just two minutes later, they had reduced the arrears - Charlie Ruff got Charlie Cole down the inside right channel and his low cross was tucked in by Anthony Mendy.
It was still all Carshalton however as they didn't let that affect their play and their fourth goal arrive on 70 minutes - Koroma won possession inside the visitors' half, found Ottaway and his inch-perfect through ball got Korboa in to finish low beyond Gore.
Christie Pattisson and Jordan Cheadle were both given a run out as the game dwindled down and the latter hit a 30 yard curler on target that forced Gore into a save.
But Korboa completed his hat-trick on 86 minutes as he latched onto a blocked Mendy shot and bent his 12th goal of the season beyond the despairing dive of Gore.
Catch all the match highlights and post-match reaction here on robins.tv
The Robins travel to Enfield Town on Saturday 13th April before Burgess Hill Town arrive at Colston Avenue on Friday 19th April.
Carshalton Athletic: Bishop; Price, Pappoe, Read, Mendy; Bradford, Adeniyi, Hamilton-Downes (c); Korboa, Ottaway (Cheadle - 80), Koroma (Pattisson - 77)
Unused subs: Olomowewe, Ohman, Dudley
Goals: Ottaway (25), Korboa (44, 70 and 86), Njie (62 og)
Assists: Bradford, Ottaway (3)
Wingate & Finchley: Gore, Williams, Eadie, Tejan-Sie, Cronin (c), Vilcu (Njie - 46), Ifil (Beckles-Richard - 75), Rapai (Ruff - 63), Cole, Mendy, Abraham
Unused subs: Stewart, Manu
Goal: Mendy (64)
Booked: Vilcu, Eadie