All three scheduled games went ahead this weekend, with plenty to play for as the Race for the title begins to heat up! Lancaster traveled to Wray, hoping to cause an upset, whilst Quernmore faced Great Ecc at home. Finally, Fulwood traveled up to Moorlands.
Ellershaw double keeps unbeaten run going
Wray 3 – 3 Lancaster
Whitaker 10, Ellershaw 41, 57 // Hayes 11, Melody 32, Luxton 36
Before the game, Stephen Harrison shared the pre-match word. Stephen spoke about how Jesus is able to restore our broken, derelict, and empty lives – in the same way that the property developers restore the homes on his favourite show ‘Homes Under the Hammer’. It was to be an exciting game to watch with Wray looking to stretch their lead at the top of the table and Lancaster looking to put pressure on the top two. The game started brightly with both teams eager to press. Wray drew first blood on 10 minutes, after a brief battle in midfield the ball was played through to the Whitaker and the Wray forward calmly rounded the keeper and scored. Refusing to lay down, Lancaster responded quickly. Lancaster Midfielder Isaac Hayes, burst down the left and took a shot at goal and despite the keeper being well placed, the ball hit the back of the net to make it 1-1. The teams went at each other for a further 20 minutes before Lancaster took the lead. Damian Melody, continuing his good run of form, scored making it 1-2. The goal was quickly followed by a third for Lancaster. On 36 minutes Tom Luxton took the ball past the keeper and, despite the tight angle, hit it home. Wray still had time to respond before the break and did so on 41. Mark Ellershaw flicked the ball over the keeper from a Wray free-kick. The first half finished 2-3. In the second half both teams continued to battle, with both having a number of chances and periods of possession and pressure. Despite Lancaster’s efforts it was not to be their day. On 57 minutes Ellershaw calmly scored a penalty after the stand-in Lancaster keeper was adjudged to have brought down the Wray forward, Whitaker. The final 30 continued and despite no further goals, the game was a great one for the neutral. Two good teams, both going at it. It finished 3-3 with a point each a fair result.
Battling Quernmore lose to clinical Great Ecc
Quernmore 1 – 2 Great Ecc
Yates 68 // Leech 35, Sheilds 74
Before the game, Quernmore Methodist Church Minister Roy Burley came to speak, sharing about the two thieves on the cross, how ones heart was hardened on the cross, whilst the other recognized their sin and came to know Jesus. The game began with Great Ecc looking to start on the front foot. The game was a little scrappy, mainly due to the condition of the pitch, however it was a real battle between the two teams. Great Ecc began to have the better of the chances, finding openings, however their shooting boots had not quite aligned with the goal to start with! Old boy Daniel Ball was back again and a through ball down the right channel from him, saw Jonny Leech let rip with a rasping effort that stung the keeper’s gloves! 5mins later a lovely cross field pass from Quernmore saw left winger Shaban Bakri connect with a great header, only bettered by Eccy’s keeper Jamie Greenall’s full length save to tip the ball round the far post. Great Ecc were getting the better chances in the first half, although great defending from the Quernmore back line and goalkeeper were keeping them out. There was a great tackle on the troublesome Great Ecc winger Parker, 1 on 1 with the keeper, full back Rosendale came from behind, managing to get a foot on the ball and divert it away from goal. However, in the 35th minute, Great Ecc were able to get the goal they wanted through Leech in the 35th minute. The ball came to Leech just outside the area, who hit it. It struck the post and unfortunately for Quernmore, cannoned into the net. Quernmore were disappointed with the goal and hoped that it wouldn’t open the floodgates. Just before half time, there was a great block from centre half Gorst, who put his whole body on the line to try and stop striker Ball from shooting, in the end blocking it with his head.
Moving into the second half, Quernmore improved, trying to put more pressure on Great Ecc. Great Ecc were having a lot of good chances and ensuring that Keeper Oldfield was kept busy. Quernmore were having chances and were putting Great Ecc under pressure, but there was constant pressure from the Great Ecc attack. However, it was Quernmore who were able to score the next goal of the game in the 68th minute. A long throw from Kelsall into the box fell to the feet of Joe Yates, who smashed it into the bottom corner. Quernmore were delighted with the goal and were hopeful of at least hanging on for the draw. However, the clinical Great Ecc side netted 6 minutes later in the 74th minute. The ball was crossed into the box, coming to Sheilds, who swiveled and smashed the ball into the back of the net on the half volley. A bitterly disappointing goal for Quernmore to concede. Both Great Ecc and Quernmore continued to press, Quernmore hoping to find the equalizer, Great Ecc the likely winner. They pushed for a third and created 4 great chances. The first, Dan Ball very nearly set up Jonny Leech, but couldn’t guide the ball into the corner of the net, Rosendale getting in the way on the line again, stopping a certain goal. Player Manager Rob Tomkins missed the next two chances, where all he had to do was place the ball into the corner. Unfortunately both chances went the wrong side of the far post!! The fourth, saw a lovely flighted ball towards the back post where Manager Tomkins was ready to leap like a salmon to head home, only for Rosendale to flick the ball clear with his head! It was a good game, albeit a little scrappy because of the very wet pitch however, it was a great battle between the two teams. Quernmore were very disappointed to lose believing that they could have got a better result from the game, however, ultimately the difference between the two sides was that Great Ecc took the chances that came their way, which is what makes the good teams great, they find a way in some way or another.
Last gasp Fulwood grab win
Moorlands 1 – 2 Fulwood
Grundy 47 // Atkinson snr 2, 87
This game flew into life, Rick Atkinson senior scoring after just 2 minutes to give Fulwood the lead. Both teams continued to work hard, trying to find the next goal of the game. However, like in the first half, it took 2 minutes of the second half to find the next goal of the game. This time, it went to Moorlands. Nick Grundy netted for Moorlands in the 47th minute. As the game drew to a close, both sides began to think that they would only be getting a draw out of the game. However, it was not to be! Fulwood were awarded a penalty and up stepped Rick Atkinson senior to try and convert it, with 3 minutes of the game to go…. and he did! Fulwood had snatched victory again from Moorlands, who must be fed up with playing Fulwood, who seem to be their bogey team!