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16 March 2015

Defender scores from the spot and looking for more

Defender Damien McCrory was back on the scoresheet with his fourth strike of the season on Saturday to set the Brewers on their way to a precious 3-0 victory over Accrington Stanley but despite giving his side a first half lead the popular Irishman acknowledged that it was only when the second goal went in courtesy of Stuart Beavon's clinical strike that Albion had complete control of the game running out comfortable winners in the end.

"We had a great start and it helps getting a goal in the first half." said Damien, "We didnt come out and play as well in the second half as we did in the first but as soon as we scored the second goal we had control of the game. 3-0 at home is a good result, a clean sheet and we can go forward from there with a bit more confidence."

Accrington had sparked a blip in Albion's season beating the Brewers at the Crown Ground just over a fortnight ago and backed up with a home defeat last time out it was important that the team got back to winning ways which they did at Hartlepool last weekend, backed up by this home victory to get the sides push for promotion moving in the right direction.

"Getting back on track at Hartlepool in a way was the main thing but I think with our home form as it has been any team can come here and we feel that we can beat any team that comes to us. We just have to make sure that we keep the intensity of the game for the full ninety minutes and I have got no doubt that we can beat anyone here."

A few were surprised when McCrory took up penalty taking duties in the Tranmere game prior to Christmas but having converted on that occasion there was only one man for the task when Stanley defender Rob Atkinson handled inside the box and McCrory admitted that keeper Scott Davies had tried to play mind games with him but Damien always knew what he wanted to do with the penalty and wasnt going to change his mind.

"I had a little chat with the keeper when he came up to me." Damien explained,  "He was trying to put me off but I just had one thing in my mind. I think as soon as you want to do something you shouldnt change your mind so I just kept it straight down the middle and luckily enough he dived. I tried to look at him afterwards but he didnt want to make eye contact."

A second goal from Stuart Beavon made things more comfortable for Albion but the seal was set on the victory when Matty Palmer added a third with a fine left foot finish with five minutes to go.

"Matty has done well with the third goal." Damien said, "He has got himself in a bit of space and then he has finished well and we all know he can finish off both feet."

Damien had only ever scored three goals in a season in his career so this season has surpassed his previous best and he hopes there is more to come in terms of goals and rewards, not just for himself but for the team as well.

"I think my best tally before this year was three goals." he reflected.  "Hopefully there are a lot more bonuses for us this season that just me scoring more that I've scored in a season before."

Saturday was Albion's fifteenth clean sheet of the season and as well as scoring more goals this campaign than in the whole of last season the defensive solidity has been a key factor, mainly due to having a settled back four through the majority of the campaign.

"We have known each other in that unit for quite a while now." continued Damien, "Moose [John Mousinho] is the only one that has come into that back five and he has done a great job leading by example. I think we have all got an understanding and if we can build on that and keep clean sheets then we are going to win more matches and hopefully end up being successful."

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