Imperious UCL Premier Division leaders Spalding United took another step towards the title with a 7-0 success at S & L Corby on Saturday, while Holbeach United were beaten 3-1 at home by AFC Rushden and Diamonds and Deeping Rangers drew a bad-tempered derby with Peterborough Northern Star 1-1.
Starting with Spalding, a Lee Beeson hat-trick moved the Tulips 20 points clear at the summit as they smashed the league’s second-from-bottom side.
Mark Jones, Jordan Thomas, Nathan Stainfield and Dan Cotton were also on-target for Pat Rayment’s side – who made it 25 wins from 27 league matches.
Spalding’s nearest rivals are now AFC Rushden and Diamonds, after they saw off a battling Holbeach side 3-1 at Carter’s Park.
Two early Matt Gearing goals (2 and pen 12) were the catalyst for the visitors’ success, but the Tigers can be proud of their effort against undoubtedly one of the best teams in the league this season.
The opener came inside two minutes, with Russ Dunkley scuffing a Greg Ling cross into the path of Gearing at the back post – and he made no mistake from close range.
A Dunkley drive then struck the arm of Holbeach skipper Matt Warfield ten minutes later, allowing the lively Gearing to fire a penalty right down the middle to double the lead.
Holbeach weathered the storm though and were much-improved after the interval. They did fall 3-0 down when Alfie Thompson expertly fired Fazel Koriya’s gross into the top corner on 80 minutes, but soon hit back to grab a classy consolation.
Tommy Treacher’s threaded through ball picked out teen winger Frazer Bayliss, who confidently dispatched a low effort past Matt Finlay (83).
The win moves Diamonds above Cogenhoe United into second after they drew 1-1 at fellow high-flyers Huntingdon Town, while Holbeach slip to ninth after a second home loss on the spin.
Meanwhile, three players were sent off as Deeping Rangers dropped two costly points at home to mid-table Peterborough Northern Star.
After 77 goalless minutes at Outgang Road, Billy Smith fired the away side into a shock lead – and things got worse moments later when Mitch Griffiths was dismissed for picking up two yellow cards.
Star’s Phil Stebbing and Deeping’s Craig Parker were both given their marching orders soon after, before Scott Ginty rescued a late point for the hosts.
The draw sees Rangers slip to fifth in the table, but they are only two points off second place.
Down in UCL Division One, Bourne Town came from behind to beat rock-bottom Woodford United 4-2 at the Abbey Lawn.
Aaron Jesson, Dan Smith, Dan Mason and Joe Searson netted for the Wakes, who did trail 1-0 and 2-1 before securing only a fifth league victory of the campaign.
In the ChromaSport Peterborough League, Pinchbeck United bookd their place in the semi-finals of the PFA Senior Cup with a super 6-2 success at Ketton. Edgaras Buzas, Aidan Moore (2), Jack Wycherley, Lee Haslam and sub Adam Braybrook grabbed the goals.
In the Premier Division, Simkus Virginijus’ sole strike earned Crowland Town a 1-0 win at Sawtry, while a Ryan Birtles treble fired Deeping Rangers Reserves to a 4-1 triumph at Ramsey Town. Thomas Smith got the other Deeping goal.
Elsewhere, Holbeach United Reserves were held to a 1-1 draw at promotion rivals Peterborough Sports Reserves and Moulton Harrox Reserves drew 2-2 at home against Warboys Town.
More football in Tuesday’s Lincolnshire Free Press.
• UCL Premier Division: Deeping Rangers 1 Peterborough Northern Star 1; Desborough Town 2 Sleaford Town 1; Holbeach United 1 AFC Rushden & Diamonds 3; Huntingdon Town 1 Cogenhoe United 1; Long Buckby AFC 1 Northampton Sileby Rangers 1; Stewarts & Lloyds Corby 0 Spalding United 7; Yaxley 2 Harborough Town 1.
• UCL Division One: Bourne Town 4 Woodford United 2; Bugbrooke St Michaels 5 Blackstones 2; Harrowby United 0 Northampton Spencer 1; Irchester United 2 Oadby Town 2; Raunds Town 2 Rushden and Higham United 1; St Neots Town Saints 0 Peterborough Sports 0; Thrapston Town 0 Rothwell Corinthians 3; Wellingborough Whitworth 2 Buckingham Town 1.
• UCL KO Cup: Boston Town 3 Potton United 0; Lutterworth Athletic 1 Wellingborough Town 4.
• ChromaSport Peterborough League: Premier Division: Ramsey Town 1 Deeping Rangers Res 4; Riverside 1 Oakham United 2; Sawtry 0 Crowland Town 1; Uppingham Town 0 King’s Lynn Town Res 1; Netherton United 2 Coates Athletic 0.
Division One: Netherton United Res 2 Kings Cliffe 2; Farcet United 1 Stamford Belvedere 3; Moulton Harrox Res 2 Warboys Town 2; Peterborough Sports Res 1 Holbeach United Res 1; Sutton Bridge United 1 AFC Stanground 1.
Division Two: Guyhirn 0 Long Sutton Athletic Res 1; Langtoft United Res 7 Ramsey Town Res 1; Oundle Town 3 Whittlesey United Res 3.
Division Three: Kings Cliffe Res 1 Wittering 4; Parkway Eagles 0 Parkside 0; Riverside Res 4 Netherton United A 5; Ryhall United Res 3 Uppingham Town Res 2; Stilton United Res 5 Farcet United Res 1.
Division Four: Spalding Town 7 Ryhall United A 0; Stamford Belvedere Res 0 Tydd St Mary 3; Warboys Town Res 0 AFC Peterborough 1.
Division Five: Huntingdon Sun 1 Bretton North End 3; Parkside Athletic Res 0 Oundle Town Res 4; Thorpe Wood Rangers 1 Rutland DR 6; Tydd St Mary Res 4 Whaplode Drove 6.
• PFA Senior Cup: Ketton 2 Pinchbeck United 6; Thorney 1 Peterborough ICA Sports 2; Whittlesey United 0 Leverington Sports 2.
• PFA Challenge Cup: Ryhall United 3 Peterborough ICA Sports Res 2.
• Intermediate Shield: Gedney Hill 3 Sawtry Res 2; Oakham United Res 2 Peterborough ICA Sports A 4.
• PFA Junior Cup: Thorney Res 1 Glinton United 2.
• League Shield: Hampton Sport 5 Peterborough ICA Sports B 2; Leverington Sports A 1 Gaultree 4; Parkway Eagles Res 0 Eye United 4.
• Boston & District League: Premier Division: Benington 3 Mareham Utd 0; Billinghay Ath 2 Freiston 1; Kirton Town 1 Old Doningtonians 1; Old Leake 1 Wyberton 2; Spilsby Town 2 Pointon 6; Swinshead Institute 6 Fishtoft 1.
Division One: Freiston Res 2 Coningsby 1; Wyberton Res 7 Billinghay Res 4.
Division Two: Fishtoft Res 2 Coningsby Res 1; Friskney 4 Spalding Harriers 0; Heckington Millers 2 Leverton 2; Mareham Res 0 Westside Rangers 3.
Division Three: Holbeach Bank Res 1 Sutterton Res 4; Park Utd 0 Rippingale & Folkingham Res 5; Pointon A 2 AFC Tetford 3; Spalding Harriers Res 2 Benington Res 2.
• Target Newspapers Challenge Cup: Swineshead A 4 Fosdyke 1; Sutterton 2 Boston College 2 (AET, pens 3-4).
• BB Insure Willoughby Cup: Skegness Town Res 2 Woodhall Spa Utd 1 (AET).