Ron Eaglen Cup Semi Final:
New Swan FC 0
Ivy Tavern 4
Defending Cup holders Ivy booked their place in the Ron Eaglen Cup final with 4-0 victory against New Swan. Despite Swan’s endeavours in truth Ivy were never really under pressure and some clinical finishing gave the score line perhaps a more flattering look.
It wasn’t long after kick off when the deadlock was broken. A delightful corner from Craig Bridge was bundled home by the onrushing James Stokes. This settled the Ivy down and despite the Swan having a fair share of possession the second arrived just after the half hour mark. A telling Callum Dye pass found Sean Cann in the area, he held off a couple of challenges before coolly slotting home to double the advantage.
The Ivy came out in the second half looking to put the game to bed but they received a setback 5 minutes in with Steven Swinburn giving his marching orders for two bookable offences. This could have unsettled the visitors but as has been the case on many occasions this season some resolute defending limited the Swan’s advances. The third goal finally arrived after a quick throw from Scott Birdsall found Cann in the area and with seemingly nothing on he twisted and turned around 3 challenges before cannoning the ball off the inside of the post to put the game beyond doubt. There was still time for the icing on the cake in the shape of a fourth goal, this time another Dye through ball sent Cann clear and he made no mistake to complete his 10th hat-trick of the season.
This result sees Ivy Tavern take on Ruston Sports FC in a repeat of the same final as last year. The final will be played at Sincil Bank on Wednesday 10th May 2017 7.30pm kick-off.
Red Lion Dunston 3
Bardney FC 1
On a lovely day for a game of football it was always going to be a tight affair with both teams only recently playing out a 2-2 draw at the Yarborough Leisure Centre.
Dunston, as in the previous week, started off slowly with Bardney having the upper hand in possession but with no end product. After 17 minutes it was Dunston who struck the opening goal when a pass along the 18 yard box saw James Broughton coming in from the left wing with a well placed left foot shot which sneaked into the bottom corner giving the visiting keeper no chance. Things did not change however and Bardney continued to have the majority of possession with Dunston working hard to keep the lead until the whistle blew for the half time interval.
A long conversation from the Manager reminding them not to ruin his weekend as he was celebrating his birthday that day concentrated their minds and after 55 minutes Dunston doubled their lead when a free kick from Harry Wright saw the Bardney keeper misjudge the flight of the ball as he fumbled it over the line. Just before the hour mark Dunston seemed to have the game in the bag with their third goal of the game after Greg Brown challenged the keeper from a cross and he took advantage when the ball dropped to the ground to knock it in from no more than a yard out.
With this the Dunston Manager made 3 quick substitutions with Shinny Williamson, Jake Ellis, and Jack Halls coming on for Mark Oshea, Broughton and Wright respectfully.
Dunston at this point thought that the game was won and with Bardney increasing their possession percentage it took a lot of defending and some smart saves from keeper Steve Brumpton to keep the score unchanged. With 23 minutes remaining Bardney, for their efforts, gained a penalty when Halls was unlucky to be adjudged to have handled the ball when laid on the ground trying to get his balance. An excellently struck penalty from the Bardney striker gave Brumpton no chance as he reduced the deficit. Bardney continued to look to reduce the deficit further but Dunston’s defence once again stood firm and resolute and the last few minutes saw them comfortably hold on to their 2 goal lead to win the game 3-1. The Manager will take the credit for his pep talk at half time although he reminded the players of their responsibility in buying him a few drinks. Bardney can feel themselves unlucky not to have had something out of the game that their efforts deserved in a game that was a credit to both teams with the referee playing his part.
Shakespeare Athletic 3
Dynamo Varsity 2
This game proved to be an entertaining affair between 2 of the top 3 teams on the day. Varsity took an early lead when a long throw in was not dealt with and Sam Wade popped up at the far both to turn the ball home. The away side looked comfortable for their lead but a miss-control by Jamie Earls on the edge of the Dynamo area allowed Paul Crampton in to ruthlessly level. Varsity appeared to be their own worst enemy and a misplaced pass in the Varsity midfield led to a good through ball finding Crampton again and he chipped over the advancing Chris Melton to put the hosts ahead.
The second half began with Varsity on the front foot and a deep Sam Joyce corner was headed home by Paul Norris to level things. Varsity could smell all 3 points and a double substitution paid instant dividends when Craig Jones found Derek Wyld in the area. He tucked home to give Varsity the lead. The away side continued to look comfortable but Shakespeare levelled again from the penalty spot with an expertly struck kick that found the top corner.
Neither side was happy to settle for a draw so they both went for the win. Varsity would have one final chance when Sam Joyce’s effort was saved by the Shakespeare keeper. The keeper though, rather than dawdle, could see a quick break on and he found a midfielder who then produced the best ball of the game, and in doing so carved open Varsity by finding Crampton, who finished calmly to secure all three points for the home side.
Varsity’s man of the match was Stuart Andrews, and their man of the match nomination for their opposition was either Crampton or the central midfielder who pulled the strings for them.
Fox & Hounds 3
North Lindum Hawks 1
After a recent much-improved run of form from Fox & Hounds FC confidence and the desire to win were high with them coming into the game against North Lindum Hawks.
The first 10 to 15 minutes were a tentative affair with North Lindum Hawks having more of the possession and a couple of opportunities to take the lead, but some resolute defending from Fox and Hounds kept the score at 0-0.
As the game went on Fox & Hounds FC started to get into the game and with a moment of brilliance from in-form Chris Moulds they took the lead when he cheekily flicked the ball over his head using his heel before bursting past the static Lindum defence before calmly slotting the ball into the bottom right hand side of the goal after hitting the post on the way in. This was an excellent end to a move started with Fox and Hounds FC’s defensive hard work.
Lindum Hawks started the second half much like they started the first half with more possession and some lovely attacking moves. The home side’s defence were working hard to keep the score at 1-0, but eventually Lindum’s pressure paid off and they were rewarded for their perseverance with a well-taken goal.
The game was starting to get feisty with both teams showing their competitive side as each team wanted to get the win. The game was end to end with both defences working hard. Eventually the deadlock was broken when James Parkinson bulldozed his way through midfield before unleashing a thunderbolt of a shot from 25 yards, Lindum’s Keeper could only watch as it flew into the back of the net. With their tails in the air Fox & Hounds continued to attack as they started to get a grip on the win whilst defending the occasional counter attack from the visitors. A poor clearance from Lindum, landing at the feet of Chris Moulds, was only going to finish in one place, and it did, as he calmly placed the ball over the keeper to conclude the scoring at 3-1 to Fox and Hounds. This proved to be a great game of football and a big win for Fox and Hounds.
Coningsby FC 2
Broadley FC 3
Broadley FC made the long journey to Coningsby as the league leaders in a first-versus-second battle that definitely lived up to expectations. In wonderful conditions, with Tattershall Castle looming over them, it was the away side who struck first – and early. Top scorer Stevie Stallard linked up with Craig Tysoe to play a one-two, ending with Stallard converting an awkward Tysoe cross into the net via his kneecap to open the scoring for the visitors. They then spurned a couple of opportunities to extend their lead in an end-to-end game where goalkeeper Robbie Stallard had to make some crucial saves but Coningsby fought back and equalised just before the break, their centre-forward spinning his centre-half before lobbing the goalkeeper well.
The second half started in a similar fashion when some superb work to keep the ball in play from Sam Gladding paid off as it fell again to Stallard in the box. He executed a Di Canio-esque scissor kick to lob the home goalkeeper and restore Broadley’s lead with his 23rd goal of the campaign. The game continued at high-speed until Coningsby again equalised, with doubts raised over whether the ball had actually crossed the line but with 10 minutes remaining the judgement was made that it had and the game was all square again. Neither side wanted a draw and in the last few minutes a long ball went up to Brady Newstead, who left the home defenders for dead with a burst of speed, before keeping his composure to slide the ball for Connor Wiseman to tap into an empty net and spark scenes of jubilation on the Broadley touchline. This result ensures that this division’s title race will go down to the wire!
It must be noted that this game was played in an incredibly good spirit, especially considering the pressure that was on both sides. The teams produced a game of really high quality football and sportsmanship, and the referee gave a display that the game deserved. Well done to all involved.