League leaders AFC Wanderers progress in cup
Despite the incessant rain during the week, it was good to see that many games still went ahead as normal this weekend.
In times of weather like this, clubs and referees are asked to give the game every chance of being played to avoid fixture congestion. Pitches do get muddy at this time of year, its a fact of life at grass roots level.
The second round of the Copy I.T. League Cup took place and Premier Division leaders AFC Wanderers eased into the quarter finals after a 6-0 (Danny Pennall 2, Luke Tuttle, Lloyd Greening, Aaron Kay, Craig Bussens) home win over Horsford United. Bayer FC were 5-2 winners at Earlham United, and first half goals by Michael Robinson and Matt Kelly plus a man of the match goalkeeping performance by James Bradford gave Rose Tavern a 2-0 win at Sprowston Wanderers. There was an impressive 6-2 (Matt Plumstead, Chris Leveridge, Jake Dugdale, Daryl Puttock 2, Carlos Blanco) victory for PL Rangers at Sprowston Sunday, for whom Darren Maxey and Will Abbs scored whilst Windmill Wanderers beat Prince of Denmark by the same score.
In league matters, Lee Clarke helped himself to a hat trick and there were goals for Scott Allen (2), David Taylor (2) and Matty Sewell as Norwich Busmen won 8-0 at Hellesdon Athletic, and in the division’s other game, Dog House warmed up for next week’s County Cup semi final with a 7-2 home win over Fiveways
In 1A, Dussindale Rovers kept up their recent good run as they ran out 4-0 winners at Castlegate FC and Vale Longo moved up a couple of places after a 3-1 home win over DCS Rapid. There were six goals in the game between Hockering and Eaton FC, three for each side.
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With Riverside Rovers inactive, Mad Moose moved back to the top of 2A as they scored six (Tom Swabey, Bram Goodwin-Wright, Ben Burgess James Raven and Darren Hills 2) without reply at The Cottage. Norman Wanderers Reserves moved up to second after beating Green Man 6-0. Nick Aston (2), Daniel King (2) and Ross Brooks all scored for Dancing Farmers as they beat Acle Wanderers 5-0. New Buckenham travelled to Stoke FC. The first half was pretty even and after 35 minutes, Shaun Wright put the home side ahead. The lead only lasted three minutes before Harley Durrant levelled the scores. After the break, New Buckenham controlled the game for a spell but couldn’t find a finish until Durrant nodded home his second from a free kick. Now it was the home side’s turn to respond, and they did in style as Jonathan Holmes beat a couple of players and lashed the ball home from fully 30 yards. Holmes wasn’t finished as five minutes later he put the home side in front direct from a corner. As in the first half, the home side’s lead didn’t last long as Zak Taylor levelled the scores almost immediately. A good run and cross by Gareth Hobley was turned into his own net by a Stoke defender with eight minutes to go, before sub Rich Halfacree made it five with his first touch of the ball. To rub salt into the home side’s wounds Durrant completed his hat trick with the last kick of the game. Final score 6-3 to New Buckenham, but the scoreline was a bit harsh on Stoke who, along with their opponents, gave referee Ian Woolner very little to do.
In 2B, leaders Bell Inn pulled further away at the top of the table after winning 6-1 at Sloughbottom Revolution, but Ribs Rovers missed the chance to close the gap on second spot as they went down 3-0 at home to Unicorns Reserves, for whom Dru Brown, Louis Jefferson and Ali Curran were on target. There was good news for DEF FC as their 3-2 victory over SDC United moved them off the bottom of the table.
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Sporting Longdale have increased their lead at the top of 3A to four points as they beat Temple Bar 3-2. However, second placed Brooke, who were inactive this weekend, have three games in hand. Temples Property moved level on points with Brooke as they beat Newsman Celtic 4-2, Kyle Double scored twice and further goals came from Marcus Holt and Jeff Turner for Temples, whilst Norman Wanderers A and Phoenix Felthorpe shared the points after a 2-2 draw.
In 3B, goals by Connor Delaney (2), Richard Brett and Luke Winter moved Schoolhouse to within a point of opponents Angel Gardens as they won 4-3. Its very tight at the top of this division with four teams in with a realistic chance of taking the title. Taverham United were 3-1 (Pete Lumb 2, Scott Symonds) winners at Costessey Sports and Windmill Elite beat Salhouse Rovers Reserves 4-2.
The only 100% record in the league has finally gone, but Costessey West End remain unbeaten as they drew 1-1 at Bungay Town Reserves. Dilham Cross Keys were 9-4 (Michael Powley 4, Lewis Crosby 2, Michael Reynolds, Jamie Clarke, Richard Pearson) winners over Horsford Youth and Micawbers Tavern are now third after a Graham Moss hat trick and goals by Shaun Hudson and Michael Turner helped them to a 5-4 win over Sporting Longdale Reserves. CNSOBU Sunday had a 5-1 (Steve Wapple 2, Jason Wright, Paul Harlow, Dan Gillies) win at The Stores Reserves.
Freemasons are now eight points clear at the top of 4B after scoring 11 without reply at home to Bunwell Sunday. Shipdham Rangers bounced back from last week’s defeat to beat Red Lion 7-1 and Locksley Athletics six game winning streak came to an end as they were held to a 2-2 draw by Mettingham, who equalised with the last kick of the game.