DANNY Rowe’s first-half treble set Oxford City on course to a 6-2 thumping of ten-man Chelmsford City.

The striker equalised the hosts’ early goal in the Vanarama National League South clash, before scoring twice more in the next 12 minutes.

Chelmsford reduced the deficit on the stroke of half-time, but in the second period it was all City.

Josh Ashby made it four, with Kyran Lofthouse netting on his debut after signing on loan from Oxford United on Friday.

Zac McEachran rounded off a sensational day shortly after the hour mark, before Chelmsford’s Billy Knott was dismissed with 15 minutes left.

The result puts City 16th in the table, but a memorable win had looked unlikely when Chelmsford opened the scoring after just nine minutes.

Sam Higgins found the net with his side’s first real chance as he nipped in front of Craig King to stab home.

Rowe levelled things up 13 minutes later, driving into the bottom corner after good work by Jack Self.

And the visitors were ahead before the half-hour mark.

Elliot Benyon beat the offside trap and his cross found Rowe, who again made no mistake.

Benyon was involved again as a good afternoon for City got even better five minutes later.

The striker won a penalty and Rowe stepped up to send the keeper the wrong way and complete his hat-trick.

The away side were in control, but Chelmsford pulled a goal back through Shaun Jeffers with half-time looming.

Lofthouse came straight into the starting line-up after joining less than 24 hours earlier and he helped give City breathing space before the hour.

The teenager won a penalty and Ashby stepped up to restore the two-goal lead.

Three minutes later it got even better for Lofthouse as he scored a spectacular fifth to make the points safe.

After picking up the ball in his own half, the loan man drove forward before firing home.

Within moments City made it six and Lofthouse was involved again, this time squaring to McEachran to tap in.

There was still time for Knott to receive a red card for his lunge on Reece Fleet, but City could not add a seventh.

Oxford City: King, Jefford, Ashby, Moore-Azille, Oastler, Fleet, Benyon, McEachran (Wright 70), Self, Rowe (Wiltshire 46), Lofthouse. Subs not used: Owusu, Hawkins, Brown.