QPR UNDER-21S signed off for 2012 in emphatic style with a resounding 8-2 victory over Colchester United.
Junior Hoilett’s first-half hat-trick set Marc Bircham’s young charges on their way, who head into the New Year four games unbeaten after a third straight league success.
Tom Hitchcock’s double and strikes from Mo Shariff, Michael Doughty and substitute Dylan Carreira helped Rangers to a handsome win.
Samba Diakite could even afford to miss a penalty as Rangers ran out comfortable winners.
Boss Bircham fielded a strong side for the visit of Colchester including first-team midfield duo Hoilett and Diakite. Ex-Portsmouth defender Tal Ben Haim was also handed a start, lining-up alongside Max Ehmer at the heart of the back four.
Buoyed by back-to-back wins in their previous two outings, the R’s were quick out of the traps in search of a third.
The game was only two minutes old when Hoilett tested visiting goalkeeper Carl Pentney, who was equal to the Canadian’s effort.
Respite was brief for the U’s, though, as Hoilett broke the deadlock within four minutes.
Doughty’s free-kick found the winger unmarked at the back post, who swivelled neatly before drilling home into the far corner.
Doughty almost doubled the R’s lead just six minutes later but Pentney did well to turn the midfielder’s 25-yard effort around the post.
Rangers didn’t have long to wait though for a second as Shariff profited from Frankie Sutherland’s through ball before slotting coolly past Pentney.
Colchester rallied thereafter and midfielder Jordan Sanderson twice came close to reducing the arrears. His free-kick from outside the box was well saved by Brian Murphy in the R’s goal before another long-range effort from Sanderson on 20 minutes flashed past Murphy’s far post.
But they were backpedalling again three minutes later as Michael Harriman’s marauding run down the right flank paved the way for Shariff to net, turning home the right-back’s cross into the far corner.
Shariff quickly turned provider a minute before the half-hour mark as his pull-back allowed Hoilett to double his tally from six yards.
Hoilett clinched a fifth and his third of the afternoon four minutes later from Sutherland’s inswigning free-kick. After the resulting cross came back off the post, Hoilett was on hand to tap in the rebound.
Colchester gave themselves a glimmer of hope going into half-time as Freddie Lapado reduced the deficit five minutes before the break. Good work by Callum Bennett down the right saw his cross find the U's striker on the stretch, who bundled the ball in from close range.
Rangers remained the dominant force after the re-start and, after a jinking run from the right, Doughty was denied by a last-ditch challenge which deflected his curling effort agonisingly wide.
The R’s midfielder didn’t have to wait long, though, netting in spectacular fashion moments later. Sutherland’s cross was partially cleared to Doughty who, from 25 yards out, unleashed a dipping volley into the top corner.
Doughty had an easier opening to double his tally on the hour mark but clipped the ball over the bar when bearing down on goal.
Rangers had the chance to net a seventh when referee Ian Bentley pointed to the spot for handball. Samba Diakite took over spot-kick duties but wasted the opportunity, lashing his penalty over.
Bircham’s side made amends for the miss as two goals in the closing ten minutes added gloss to the scoreline.
Hitchcock met Hoilett’s centre to add a seventh before Carreira capped his second-half display from the bench with a cool side-footed finish after breaking the U’s offside trap.
A lapse in concentration in the R’s defence allowed Lapado to grab a consolation in stoppage time for the visitors, who were well beaten at the final whistle.
QPR: Murphy, Harriman, Sendles-White, Diakite (Gibbons 69), Ben Haim, Ehmer, Hoilett, Sutherland, Shariff (Carreira 46), Hitchcock, Doughty
Unused subs: Permenter, Trani, Petrasso