Midlands Regional Alliance Round-up
Rowsley ’86 showed their sights are still firmly set on the Midlands Regional Alliance Premier Division title after a 5-1 win at Little Eaton left them just three points adrift of current leaders Melbourne Dynamo with a game in hand.
Goals from Will Fletcher (2), Sam Hoskin, Anthony Porter and Andrew Roome ensured a comprehensive victory for Chris Baker’s boys, with a scoreline which provided an added boost to Rowsley’s goal difference figures.
The other Premier Division fixture of the weekend saw Sandiacre Town slip up at home to Wirksworth Town, squandering a first-half penalty and eventually going down to the only goal of the game from the visitors’ James Newton.
Ripley Town and Rowsley ’86 Reserves played out a 1-1 stalemate in Division One, with Lewis Parkin scoring for Ripley and Billy Lester replying for the visitors
That result allowed Matlock United to climb up to fifth place after second-half goals from Callum Gill (2) and Graham Whysal gave them a 3-0 victory at basement side Newhall United Reserves.
In Division Two, there was goals galore as Matlock Town CFA won 4-3 over Little Eaton Reserves.
The hosts started with a high pressing game that paid off after ten minutes when from a dazzling run from Marcus Beddoe the ball was squared to Jake Hatcliffe who was able to slot home.
The lead was doubled on 24 minutes with another dazzling run by Beddoe and a pile drive of a finish from Jake Gascoigne that hit the roof of the net.
The CFA were in complete control and made it 3-0 on 30 minutes with another fine free-kick by set piece expert Alex Lacey that flew into the bottom left hand corner.
The relentless CFA kept up the pressure and on 33 minutes Beddoe got a well-deserved goal to cap his two assists and put the home side 4-0 up with a neat finish from six yards following a mistake by the visitors’ defence.
Just before half time the CFA defence let in the Little Eaton striker Graham Whysal who rounded the keeper and placed a neat finish to reduce the arrears on 44 minutes.
The second-half started as the first finished with Little Eaton Reserves on the attack and from a corner on 48 minutes a needless handball saw the result of a penalty being awarded. This was dispatched by Chris Johnson and the visitors were back in the game at 4-2 with over 40 minutes to play.
With the momentum with the visitors the game became a scrappy affair with the CFA finding it difficult to stamp the authority shown in the first half.
Two fantastic saves by CFA keeper Sam Duffin kept the visitors at bay but on 75 minutes they got in behind the CFA defence and last man Jack Crossley brought down the Little Eaton striker for the second penalty of the game as well as a red card for Crossley.
This was once again dispatched to make the score 4-3 with 15 minutes to go and the CFA now down to ten men.
But a brave and resilient CFA side dug in to grind out the result and Beddoe nearly extended the lead when he hit the bar on 85 minutes with a shot from the edge of the box.
Man of the match was Jordan Evans.
Meanwhile, Scott Spencer bagged a hat-trick for Cromford as they won 5-3 at home to Wirksworth Ivanhoe to book a Challenge Cup semi-final place, Adrian Kershaw scoring their other two goals and Michael Beech and Daniel Watson (2) netting for Ivanhoe.