Long Sutton 1sts have success in men's and ladies' matches, away and at home respectively
LONG SUTTON 1STS 6, HORNCASTLE 1STS 4
After a 3-2 home win against Horncastle in their first game of 2020, Sutton headed to the East Lindsey town with confidence of doing the double.
With a midfield partnership of Daniel Batten and Jacob Synott supported by Josh Baker, Sutton looked to dominate in midfield as they did in January.
The plan worked well as Stefan Fox and Tom Baguley kept out anything the hosts threw at them.
At the other end of the pitch, Baker drove his team forward with the help of man of the match Ed White and Batten who opened the scoring with a composed finish following a short corner.
Baker doubled the lead after good team play before Horncastle scored two quick goals to level the match.
But James Collingwood-Smith restored Sutton's lead before half-time and after it, Baker made it 4-2 when Horncastle were forced into an error.
Even a goal back for the hosts showed no signs of putting Sutton off as White beat three players before flicking the ball up and half-volleying it past the keeper.
But the hosts scored their fourth goal soon afterwards to only trail by one with about three minutes to go.
Sutton's sixth and final goal was the result of good work by Alex Canham who set up Baker for his hat-trick, giving his side their third win from six games this year.
SPALDING 2NDS 4, CAMBRIDGE CITY VETS 0
A third Division Three NW win in a row was the reward for Spalding after comfortably seeing off Cambridge City Vets at Glen Park.
But despite a first half where the home side dominated possession, Spalding only had a lone Tim Maltby goal to show for their efforts.
A team talk by captain Rob Callaby at half time refocused his team on their style of play and use of the wide areas.
Then within minutes of the restart, Spalding had doubled their lead when Mike Morris pulled wide and fired across for Maltby to deflect in.
Morris himself then increased Spalding’s lead before Steve Rogers tipped home Harry Vickers’ goal-bound lob to seal the win.
LEADENHAM 2NDS 6, SPALDING 5THS 1
It was never going to be easy for Spalding in their Division Six NW (N) game at league leaders Leadenham 2nds.
The home side had hit 65 goals in 16 games before Saturday's fixture, with just 10 goals against.
Spalding named five under-14s in their 12-man squad, including Seb Lewis who was making his league debut at right back.
However, Spalding made their hosts work for the victory and despite the scoreline, heads stayed high at every stage of the contest.
Neil Ireland fired in two penalty corner goals for Leadenham, with John Simpson, Joe Beardall, Nick Playford and captain Sam Darling also finding the net.
Charlie Smith scored Spalding's only goal when the score was 2-0 to Leadenham, finishing off a fine team move.
The visitors broke swiftly and when Olly Baker took a quick free hit, his quick thinking set up Smith with a chance to sweep the ball home from the top of the D.
LONG SUTTON LADIES’ 1STS 6, ST IVES 2NDS 0
Sutton made it five wins from their last seven Division Two NW games, keeping their third clean sheet of 2020 at Peele Leisure Centre.
Having beaten St Ives 3-0 last October, captain Jo Bland and her side started quickly, with an early, opening goal coming from fine play by the Gittins twins which was finished by Emmy.
St Ives then took the game to Sutton before Connie Gittins made it 2-0 when she took the ball into the D and shot past the visiting keeper.
In the second halfSt Ives only managed to win one short corner asexcellent running by Sutton's Maisie Sullivan and Hannah Baker snuffed out any threat.
By this stage the game was being dominated by the Sutton midfield of Jemima Dodd, Emmy Gittins and Katie Collingwood-Smith, with Gemma Parr pushing forward when possible as well.
Even Tania White had a chance to shoot before a further four goals were added to the tally, three of them for Connie Gittins.
Two of the goals came from rebounds after initial shots by from player of the match Baker, who did everything but score, with the fourth goal for Gittins coming by a tap-in at the far post.
The win lifted Sutton to third in the table, seven points behind second-placed Bury St Edmunds 2nds.
LONG SUTTON LADIES' 2NDS 0, CITY OF PETERBOROUGH LADES' 4THS 2
Sutton club legend Lorraine Wallis played back-to-back matches at Peele Leisure Centre on Saturday, replacing regular 2nds' keeper Emily Braginton in goal for the Division Four NW (N) visit of Peterborough.
The home side started strongly, with Emma Grosvenor and Louise Southgate providing combined strength in midfield by intercepting balls before sending them through to Esme Whitelam and Wendy Canham.
When Peterborough did break, the defensive formation of Claire and Lucy Smith, Julie Skate and Lynne Braginton were there to help Wallis out.
Claire Smith's big hitting meant Sutton were able to send the ball back through to midfielders Georgina Synnott and Sarah Skate who both worked hard on the wings, staying wide for the defence to get balls out to them and also using their pace to chase balls down.
Meanwhile, Lucy Dack on the wings was ably assisted by Maddie Arnold who showed versatility in slotting in between the wing and defence, getting involved with tackles and clearing balls.
But despite their hard work and determination, Sutton fell behind to a goal from Peterborough's Liz Dakin before half-time and Ed Whybrow added a second before full-time.
OTHER SCORES:- Long Sutton 2nds 4 Bourne Deeping 2nds 0
Upminster 1sts 2, Spalding 1sts 2 (Robin Edlington, George Halgarth);
Cambridge City 5ths 7, Spalding 3rds 2 (Pete Wright, Dan Azzopardi);
Spalding 4ths 8, Cambridge City 6ths 1 (Matthew Hicks x2, Steve Hart x2, Ryan Mountney x2, Dave Burrell, Harry Maplethorpe).
More by this authorWinston Brown