MAX-IMUM POINTS: A Max Prestwood hat-trick helps Torbay Police to a 4-1 victory away at Buckfastleigh Rangers. (c) Paul Mirfin
Herald Cup holders East Allington United came through a potential banana skin fixture at Division One title challengers Chudleigh Athletic to narrowly book their place in the quarter-finals of the competition. Simon Hannaford once again found the net for the Pirates together with Josef Sita who scored a crucial brace in the 3-2 victory, Oliver Williams and Mathew Carroll keeping things tight with goals for the hosts. Andy Weeks’ side will be at home, this Saturday, to the lowest ranked side left in the competition – Division Two outfit Broadmeadow STFC.
Josh Moore scored his first goal of the year at Chuley Road and it proved enough to win the Ashes another three points as they defeated Upton Athletic 1-0. Kingsteignton Athletic hang on to their tailcoats though, Matt Hooper’s side bouncing back from their disappointing draw at Brixham to knock three past Watcombe Wanderers without reply at Broadpark. Tom Reeves and Luke Pellowe netted in consecutive weeks and there was also a first goal for new signing Joe Clark-Farley. Buckland Athletic Reserves started their year in positive fashion, their youthful side enjoying a 2-1 home win over Dartmouth AFC with Frankie Maloney and Jordan Ewing the Yellows’ goalscorers and Lee Morgan with Darts’ consolation.
With nine straight losses in 2017, Roselands had been looking on course for a quick return to Division One. But they made the most of their home six-pointer against Ivybridge Town Reserves with a comprehensive 6-0 triumph to start 2018 on a bright note. Tom Dunlop hit two for the Red Army, as did James Beech, with Joe Massey and debutant Sam Millin completing the goalscoring. At the other end, Sammy Brown made some critical saves to preserve the team’s first clean sheet. Paignton Villa also managed a 6-0 win, away at Loddiswell Athletic, for their first points in four games. Samuel Woodcock netted a hat-trick for Villa, Francis Durham scored twice and Shaun Ripley also found the net.
The top two met in Division One with Harbertonford moving above former leaders Totnes and Dartington by beating them 3-2 at the Foxhole Ground. Steven Sutton led the goalscoring for Fords with a double, fellow striker Samuel Passmore with the away side’s other goal. However, goalkeeper Matt Maller was also instrumental in the win by limiting the damage from a dangerous Tots forward line which included two-goal Charlie Johansen. Beesands Rovers – who are next up for Fords – closed the gap on third-placed Chudleigh, Tom Hansen, Finley Bullen and Danny Tucker on target in a 3-1 success away at Newton Abbot ’66, Darren Morgan netting for The Sixes. Six goals were shared at The Berry with Charlie Barnes, Ash Yeoman and Olly Stallard scoring to overcome a 2-0 deficit to visitors Buckland Athletic Thirds. But the Yellows refused to give up and struck late in stoppage time to earn a point; Kieran Sweet scored two of Bucks’ goals with Owen Yarnall the other name on the score-sheet. Watcombe Wanderers Reserves moved into the top six and level with Salcombe by beating Newton Abbot Spurs Reserves 2-1 at Long Lane. Mike Fieldhouse scored both goals for the Greens with Andy Eden adding to his tally for Spurs. Paignton Saints hadn’t won a league game since September but they ended their abysmal run with a hefty 5-1 home victory over fellow strugglers Ipplepen Athletic who have now lost nine in a row in the league. Jamie Micklewright opened the scoring for Saints, Billy Reay setting him up for a thunderous 20 yard effort which flew into the top corner, giving the ‘keeper no chance. Luke Johnson doubled the lead before half time, Joe Jordan driving a low cross across the six yard box for Johnson to slide in at the back post and stab home. Saints had their tails up and hit the ground running after half-time, Jordan soon adding Saints’ third with a fine solo run down the wing before cutting inside and firing home. Man-of-the match Jordan then turned provider again, this time crossing for Jamie Ford to volley in the fourth. Saints’ influential skipper Billy Reay then put the icing on the cake with a fantastic header from deep following Micklewright’s free-kick. Saints still didn’t let up and continued to press, twice hitting the bar and having a Mike Howes header disallowed for a push, ut they had to settle for the five. Kieran Savage did manage to score a late consolation goal for Ipplepen but the game was well over by then. Bottom side Stoke Gabriel Reserves finally saw a glimmer of hope, drawing 2-2 away at Babbacombe Corinthians in Ted Locke’s second game in charge. Stoke became the last SDFL side to win a point although deductions still see them on minus five. Corries’ goals were scored by Connor Burns and Samuel Swann.
In Division Two, winless Newton United hosted leaders Bishopsteignton United in their opening game of 2018 and had cause for optimism despite failing to pick up a point. Goals apiece from Ben Harper and Ben Austin kept United in the game but Bishops won 3-2 thanks to a Craig Stonelake brace and a single from Alan Stuckey who came off the bench. Second-placed Bovey Tracey Reserves also managed a narrow win, defeating Hookhills United 4-3 with doubles apiece for Lewis Perring and Alistair Chuchuck. Ian Collis, David Helliwell and Shaun Wingrove found the net for the away side and there was also a sending off for Steve Cooney of Bovey. Riviera United moved into the top three despite not playing, Torbay Police’s 4-1 win over Buckfastleigh sending the Rangers down to fifth. Max Prestwood notched a hat-trick for the Bees with substitute Matthew Shepard also on target; Ian Howse was Rangers’ sole goalscorer. The other Division Two game saw Broadmeadow hammer Kingskerswell and Chelston Reserves 7-1 at Teignmouth Community School. Daniel Kenward put away a hat-trick, Chris Bennett scored twice and there were singles for Josh Hall, sub Andy Espley and, for ‘Kerswell, Mark Tobin.
Division Three leaders Meadowbrook picked up where they left off with a commanding 10-0 victory over Teign Village – with top goalscorer Ben Bowhay not even playing! Kaya Fenner scored five for Brook, Myles Chalcraft and Chris Fry added doubles and Jack Callaway also scored. Ashburton Reserves also won convincingly, thrashing Ipplepen Athletic Reserves 9-0 away. The goals were more evenly spread at The Ham as Harbertonford Reserves overcame Roselands Reserves 5-3 to keep up their pressure on the leaders. A hat-trick from the dependable David Hatch and singles from Luke Forward and Daniel Thorp secured the points for Fords with Tom Bintcliffe scoring twice for Roselands and Mathew James also among the goals. Waldon Athletic Reserves picked up another three points, beating Abbotskerswell 4-1 at Windmill Hill for consecutive home wins. The Clarets’ goalscorers were Jake Grinsill, Josh Mason, Ben Clark and Macauley Dallow with Abbots’ Oliver Rietschy hitting their consolation. Dartmouth AFC Reserves moved above Upton Athletic Reserves who were unable to fulfil the fixture.
There were no games at all in Division Four. In Division Five, Barton Athletic Reserves swept to a 5-1 home victory over Broadhempston United to go five points clear of WBB at the top. Adam Townsend managed a brace with the other goals coming from Ricky Bergin, Anthony Jones and Tony McCarthy. Sehena Coulibaly found the net for the Robins. Third-placed Brixham AFC Thirds were unable to move level on points with WBB as they were held 1-1 at home by Newton Rovers Reserves; Shane Pike scored Brixham’s goal with Nathan De’Ath on target for Rovers. The Division’s other game saw Stoke Fleming and Strete leapfrog opponents Watcombe Wanderers Thirds into fifth place. A Lee Prestage hat-trick and Sam Bruckner double led Stoke to a 5-1 win a Long Lane with Jake Lavercombe scoring for the Greens.