February 15th

MOOSE FAIL TO HOLD ON AS ACLE FIGHTBACK

The outstanding games remaining the in League Cup second round were played this weekend. Mad Moose, bottom of 1A at present gave Premier Division Acle Rangers a real fright by racing to a two goal lead within the first ten minutes, but a second half recovery by the home side saw them progress to the next round as they scored four without reply. Adam Edwards scored twice for Aslacton and there were goals for Dean Mortimer, Ed Lake and Ben Sterman as they beat Windmill Wanderers 5-2. Matty Barker and Gary Walsh scored for Wanderers, and Bungay Town made it through to the last eight as they scored eight in beating Sprowston Wanderers.

In the Premier Division, Farmhouse closed the gap on leaders Riverside Rovers with a 3-1 home win over ten man Norman Wanderers for whom Calum Webb scored a forty yard screamer. Spixworth Sunday reported they were involved in a good game at Poringland Wanderers that could have gone either way. Spixworth took a first half lead through an own goal, but he home side hit back to score twice in the last twenty minutes, through Tom Pitchell and Tim Carey to take the points. In division’s basement battle, Ross Saunders 2, Sean Sandell, Richard Lake, Ben Bircham and an og, helped Sprowston Rovers leapfrog Doghouse and move off the bottom as they won 6-2.

In 1A, Jeff Larke and Joshua O’Donoughoe were on target as Horsford United won 2-0 at Norman Wanderers Res, whilst Brooke played for almost an hour with ten men, but a battling performance saw them take a point in a 1-1 draw against Anglian Rovers. Sam Page was on target for Brooke. The big game in 1B saw Earlham United gain revenge for a 6-2 defeat by Bell Inn back in November as they beat them by the same score in the return fixture. Liam Moriarty hit a hat trick and Ashley Davies, Marcus gee and Darrell Wigger also scored for United, whilst Dale Simpson and Ben Fisher replied for the home side. Taverham United and Moles Rest shared the points in a 1-1 draw, Chris Bloor scoring for United and Acle Rangers Res were 3-1 victors at Ribs Rovers.

Costessey West End are the new leaders of 2A, thanks to a 3-0 home win over Micawbers Tavern. Tom Lansdale scored four times as Constable Crusaders came from a goal down to beat Ketts Tavern Wizards 5-1, Jordan Frost added the fifth and, The Cottage also scored five as they won at Fat Cat & Canary. The other game played in the division saw Newsman Celtic draw 2-2 at home to Norman Wanderers A. A Benito Gil goal 15 minutes from time ensured DEF FC opened up a seven point gap over opponents Revolution FC at the top of 2B. I saw this game and it was as tight and tense as the scoreline suggests, with neither goalkeeper having much to do for most of the game. After Gil’s strike, Revolution laid siege to the DEF goal, but were unable to find a way past stand in keeper Ben Lemmon who produced three outstanding saves in that final period. James Smith scored twice for Salhouse Rovers who had a good 2-0 win at SDC Utd and it was good to get a message from referee Ian Woolner praising both Rileys FC and Hethersett Athletic for their part in a game that finished 4-4. Hethersett had come from 3-1 down to take a 4-3 lead, Alex Curran 2, Andy Smith and Brendan Gray scoring, before Rileys levelled with five minutes left. Dan McCue, Matthew Daynes, Adam Simpson and Matthew Brighton found the net for Rileys. Great stuff. Mettingham FC also had a good morning as they ran out 5-2 (Dan Smith 2, Rob Marshall, Aidan Collett, Matthew Staff) winners at home to Briston Wanderers.

The Middle Green took another step towards the 3A title as they scored five without reply in beating Brooke Res. Second placed Mischief FC suffered their fourth defeat of the season as they went down 4-1 (Josh Costillo Hall 2, Steve Lister, Jamie Platten) at home to Sporting Longdale Res, whilst GaGa FC moved level on points with Mischief, Dan Bowen, Kastriot Pepa and Aaron Sodah scoring in their 3-1 defeat of MC Rovers. AFC Westlegate had a good 3-2 (Steven Waple, Karl Spurdon, Matthew Richmond) victory at Dynamo FC. Westfield found themselves 3-1 down with at Winfarthing with 25 minutes to go but fought back to win 4-3, goals coming from Ricki Summer 2, Jack Peters and Jonathan Reeve, whilst there was a second win on the bounce for Tasburgh Utd as they beat Freethorpe 4-0. In 3B there was a big win for leaders Phoenix FC as they scored fourteen without reply at home to Sporting Iceni. Jamie Smith scored seven and Larry Rouse grabbed five and there were also goals for  Josh Goodhall and Spencer Alden. Second placed Trimingham Pilgrims scraped past East Tuddenham, winning 3-2 and Salhouse Rovers Res were 5-0 (Jono Carver 2, Ryan Frankland, Martin Woolner) winners over Felthorpe. Binham Village got back to winning ways with a 5-2 victory over Red Lion, whilst the game between Hethersett Ath Res and Hickling Barn had to be abandoned due to a serious injury to Hickling player Carl Bailey. Hickling have since contacted the league praising their opponents, referee Steve Boddy and particular Hethersett goalkeeper Chris Brownbridge, who stayed with the injured player until the ambulance arrived and even dropped in at the A&E later in the day to check on his condition.

Congratulations to Blofield United. Without kicking a ball they took the Under 19 A section title as an injury time free kick from Long Stratton’s Adam Race gave his side a point against the only side that could catch the leaders, Hellesdon Youth. Joe Read was the other Stratton scorer in the 2-2 draw, whilst Connor Laskey and Elliot Roe scored for Hellesdon. The Hellesdon manager and players congratulated Blofield on their success when sending in their result card. Coltishall Jaguars gained their second point of the season as they drew 1-1 with Beccles Caxton.

Sprowston Athletic returned to the top of the B division after a 5-1 victory over Hellesdon Youth B, but Reepham Town’s challenge for honours suffered a setback as they went down to a Reece May hat trick in their 3-2 defeat at home to Norman Wanderers Youth. Litcham scored six without reply in their game at Coltishall Jaguars B and Drayton will be pleased with their 3-1 (Jack Dearden 2 Joe Welton) victory at East Coast Warriors.

The C division is beginning to get tighter at the top. Leaders Poringland Wanderers suffered their second successive defeat as they went down 2-0 (Evan Hughes, Ash Maskell) at Scole Utd who now trail the leaders in third place by five points but have a game in hand. Harleston Town were 3-1 winners at Newton Flotman and Wymondham Town suffered a 5-2 (Lewis Hart 2, Dave Wooding, Aidan Rayner, Sam Childerhouse) defeat at Watton United. Norwich United scored seventeen times against Freethorpe, but were full of praise for their opponents who they say played with great spirit and enthusiasm throughout the game, despite only having eight players. Great credit to them, its fair to say that not many clubs throughout the league would have done that.