West Herts first XI took themselves to within one win of promotion back to the National League with a comfortable 5-0 victory over second in the table Cambridge City.

The Stags took firm control of both the ball and the game early on and a high transfer allowed their forwards to find pockets of space and the midfield the freedom to drive through into the D.

The first goal came in somewhat fortuitous circumstances as Dan Webster’s reverse stick cross following his run into the left side of the D was deflected in by a Cambridge defender.

The lead was doubled in more conventional fashion, with a flicked penalty corner by Webster. He also played a part in the third when his long left-to-right ball picked out Luke Frey on the right edge of the D, who with one defender to beat found Callum Till at the back post. Despite his shot being saved, Steve Causbrook was on hand to tuck away the rebound.

Herts managed to extend their advantage even further before the half-time break with Causbrook again getting the finishing touch to make it 4-0.

Despite a number of changes at the break Stags were unable to continue their high-scoring form, and only had a Max Webster goal to show for their efforts in the last 35 minutes to complete the scoring.

Herts take on beleaguered bottom-of-the-table Ipswich & East Suffolk at the New Field this weekend.

The visitors are currently averaging just a goal-a-game, and Herts are close to breaking their 100-goal barrier for this season, so expectations are high for promotion to be sealed sooner rather than later.

West Herts Ladies played their part in a keenly-contested game at Old Loughtonians, but were edged out by the odd goal in seven.

Herts went one down early on but Miranda Hall struck twice to reverse the fortunes of the visitors before the break.

The game was held up for a time after Alice Poole sustained a blow to the head from an opponent’s stick and had to go to casualty for treatment.

The Stags were unfortunate to concede twice against the run of play after the break, but a drag flicked strike by Becky Webster restored parity, only for the hosts to snatch the win.

The men's Seconds were also up against a Cambridge City side, as they went head-to-head with their third team.

The result was the same in that Herts were the winning side, although things were much closer than the 5-0 rout between the first teams.

The struggling reserves were able to withstand a good deal of pressure from Cambridge and eventually ran out 1-0 winners courtesy of a Nils Mundy strike.

The ladies second XI closed the gap on third-placed Waltham Forest with a 2-0 home win.

A well-prepared visiting side were rocked early on by Katy Munroe’s rocket, and the hosts' second came after some wily work along the goal line from Tanita Montgomery set up Natalie Ross to volley home.

A brace of goals from Adam Friend was enough to earn the men's third XI a priceless win 2-1 away at Welwyn Garden City, as they try and claw themselves to safety after a season of struggle so far, but the ladies Thirds went down 2-1 at home to Chiltern.