OXFORD United enjoyed one of their best nights of the season after hammering relegation-threatened York City and then seeing a host of their promotion rivals had slipped up.

The 4-0 win at the Kassam Stadium saw them climb to second in Sky Bet League Two on goal difference after Plymouth Argyle lost at Barnet.

They also now have an eight-point cushion ahead of fourth-placed Accrington Stanley, who were another high-flying side to be beaten.

United’s success was their third in eight days and head coach Michael Appleton has been thrilled to see his side hit a rich vein of form as the games begin to run out.

He said: “It’s a fantastic time to go on an unbeaten run. We’ve got three wins behind us now and we don’t want to let that slip.

“The last week has gone brilliantly and the lads have responded well after a couple of defeats.

“To score four and get a clean sheet, we’ve got to be delighted with that.”

United got off to a great start when the in-form Jordan Bowery bagged his fourth goal in three games.

The tall striker was well placed when Callum O’Dowda’s shot was parried, although the improvised finish was a first for him.

Bowery said: “I don’t think I’ve scored off my thigh, so it’s one to tick off.”

Chey Dunkley made it 2-0 with a powerful header from a corner, but it was Danny Hylton’s exquisite third goal which had Bowery purring.

He said: “Every game you see a bit of brilliance from him, flicking it over someone or putting it through their legs. He deserved that because he worked so hard.”

A first home league win since Boxing Day was rounded off by Kemar Roofe, who returned with a close range goal after two games out resting a groin injury.

It was the first time United’s top-scorer had come on as a substitute this season and it was not an experience he is keen to repeat.

He said: “I’m probably not the best person to have on the bench, I was rocking and not the happiest.

“I just wanted to get on the pitch and help the team. It was good to be back and we got the result we needed.”