After heavy rain that had fallen across the region in the last 48 hours it was good to see that all of the games were played today despite one or two concerns as to whether some pitches would be playable and it is reported that a couple of games did well to finish with rain standing on the pitches.
Well done to all concerned in ensuring that the games were able to go ahead and indeed completed where surface issues arose.
Leaders New Swan were without a game today but they will now feel Ivy Tavern breathing down their necks as the Ivy won 6-1 at Scothern United to move within 3 points of them. The Ivy have two games in hand and the top of the table could well go right down to the wire in this division this season, as it has in previous seasons. Third placed Ruston Sports AFC were also without a game today but their neighbours Rustons United strengthened their position in fourth place with a resounding 10-2 away win when they visited bottom of the table Welton Sports AFC. A special mention must be given to the Welton boys as they had a bare 11 players today and no recognised goalkeeper but they turned up and played with heart and spirit despite the heavy score line against them. They are a fine example of a team sticking together when a season turns out to be one to forget on paper but they play the game in the right way and always turn up, sometimes without 11 players. Well done to all involved with that team.
Metheringham also cemented their position in the middle of the table with a 5-2 home win against third from bottom Newton United.
With the days leaders Gatehouse FC without a fixture today it was left to second placed Saxilby Athletic to see if they could close the point’s gap at the top of the table. They did just that with a handsome looking 8-1 home win against mid table AFC Lincoln Green. AFC Plough have enjoyed an upturn in their fortunes recently by finding some consistency with their form. They continued that today with an excellent 6-2 win in Horncastle against AFC Harpars, a team themselves who have been in good form since the turn of the year. Today’s result sees Plough move up to third position in the League, their highest position of the season. Welton FC headed this division for long periods prior to Christmas and their recent inconsistency has seen them drop down the table at quite a rate. Their 3-3 draw today away at Old Boys United sees them climb back up a place to fifth spot whilst their hosts remain in a perilous position, third from bottom on goal difference from the two sides immediately behind them at the foot of the table. Trent Valley FC are another team who have transformed their results since the turn of the year and that form continued today at the expense of Hykeham Memorial when they triumphed 5-0 at a wet and windy Yarborough. The result represented a continual decline shown by the Memorial boys of late and their cause will not be helped by the loss of influential midfielder, and Club Secretary, Jordan Clarke who will be sidelined for a few weeks. The League wish him well with his recovery and hope to see him return to action very soon. The final game in this division saw the bottom side St Helens travel to Horncastle where they returned with a share of the points in an entertaining 3-3 draw. Despite this positive result St Helens remain in bottom spot on goal difference from AFC Harpars, who themselves drop to second from bottom following their defeat to AFC Plough.
Railway Inn AFC’s run as leaders of this division came to and today when they visited second placed Bassingham Bugle Horn FC. An exciting game finished with a 4-3 triumph for the Bassingham team which sees them replace Railway at the head of the division with Railway now occupying second spot, just a point behind the leaders. FVA Jerusalem remain in third position after their 10-2 drubbing of mid table Greenbank FC today. Waddington United have been in fine form of late and that form continued today with a 3-1 home success against Plough Sturton, a result that sees Waddington move up to fourth position, changing places with Greenbank FC on the way. Crows Athletic moved up a place to sixth position courtesy of a narrow 3-2 win at home to winless and bottom of the table Lincoln High Street. The remaining game saw Bardney FC and Red Lion Dunston share 4 goals in an entertaining and competitive 2-2 draw at Yarborough.
With the division’s runaway leaders Wragby FC without a game today it was left for the other teams to see if they could close the gap a little. Second placed Shakespeare Athletic did just that with an excellent 6-1 away win at Queen in the West but third placed Dynamo Varsity may feel that they dropped a couple of points with a 3-3 home draw against third from bottom Fox & Hounds FC. Cherry Willingham have dropped off the pace a little recently after their impressive start to the season, none more so than today when they went down 4-5 in a thriller away at Turks Head, this being the second time that they have lost to the same opponents this season as Turks Head knocked them out of the Fred Quibell Cup on the same pitch earlier in the season. This result leaves Turks Head in seventh spot in the table, a point behind sixth placed North Lindum Hawks who won 4-3 away at Ingleby Arms (Marton) FC. At the foot of the table Lincoln RNA recorded only their second win of the season with a 2-1 home win against second from bottom HBW United, a result which closes the gap to just one point between the two teams.
I have commented in previous weeks about how things are tight at the top of this division and that was proved today. At kick-off the leaders were AFC Golden Eagle but their 0-2 defeat at home to second placed Coningsby FC saw them drop to third in the table with the visitors returning to head the division. Broadley FC elevated themselves to second spot with a close 2-1 win at home to mid-table Saxilby Sports AFC. Hykeham Athletic remain interested in challenging for honours following their 7-0 demolition of the bottom team The Blue Lion FC, which left the visitors still looking for their first point of the season. The result sees Hykeham Athletic now 7 points behind top spot having played a game less. Railway Inn United went goal crazy with an 8-0 win over Fred Quibell Junior Cup finalists Birchwood United and the two teams that play at Lincoln Christ Hospital School, AFC West End and Nosey FC, played each other at the School today with the away side on the day, Nosey FC, taking the points with a 4-1 win.