Leaders Crowhurst make it eight wins in nine, Rye Town return to the summit, pacesetters Northiam 75 II lose again

Crowhurst maintained their three-point lead at the top of the East Sussex Football League with an eighth win in nine league games.

Wednesday, 1st December 2021, 10:44 am
Updated Wednesday, 1st December 2021, 10:46 am
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Allan McMinigal scored a hat-trick, Jan Bailey bagged a brace and Dominic Clarke was also on target as the Crows won 6-0 away to Wadhurst United on Saturday.

Second-placed Battle Town picked up three more Premier Division points without even kicking a ball as they were awarded a walkover at home to Hawkhurst United.

Punnetts Town jumped up two positions to third courtesy of a tremendous 7-2 victory at home to St Leonards Social, who have dropped to fifth following three straight defeats.

Craig Norman and Louis Walder netted twice each, and one apiece from Simon Betteridge, Harry Murphy and Steven Worsell made up Punnetts' magnificent seven. Antony Atkin scored both goals for a Social side which had a player sent off.

Rock-a-Nore climbed out of the bottom two on goal difference after picking up a 1-1 draw at home to sixth-placed Northiam 75. George Lawrence struck for the visitors.

The match between Bexhill Town and Robertsbridge United was postponed.

DIVISION ONE

Rye Town went back to the top of Division One after ending their run of back-to-back defeats with a 3-1 win at home to Battle Town II.

Two Tom Thomson goals and one from Rob Levett got Rye back to winning ways, and put them two points clear of previous leaders Bexhill AAC, whose match at home to The JC Tackleway was postponed. AAC have a game in hand on Rye as a result.

Third-placed Sidley United II went level on points with AAC, albeit having played a match more, by virtue of a 4-1 victory away to South Coast Athletico.

Alex Williams plundered all four of Sidley's goals, while Connor Benton Powell found the net for sixth-placed Athletico.

The other second-tier fixture, between Peche Hill Select and SC Pass+Move Arrows, was postponed.

DIVISION TWO

Division Two pacesetters Northiam 75 II suffered a fourth successive loss in all competitions as they went down 2-1 away to Catsfield.

Jacob Jones grabbed both goals for the Cats, who are up to fourth and now only four points behind their victims. Kelvin Lowes notched for 10-man Northiam.

Westfield II moved up to second - and within two points of the leaders - thanks to a 3-2 victory away to Sandhurst.

A Jay Edwards double and one from Lee Paine gave Westfield the edge over a Sandhurst side for whom James Found and Andrew Turner struck.

Victoria Baptists jumped up two places to sixth on the back of a 4-2 success at home to Herstmonceux.

James Bellett and Joshua MacDonald netted twice each for Victoria, who are now just two points and one position behind their victims.

Little Common II dropped to third after their scheduled trip to Hooe was postponed, but they are still just three points adrift of leaders Northiam and now have a game in hand.

DIVISION THREE

AFC Hollington pulled off a crucial win in the Division Three title race with a 4-1 victory away to leaders Ninfield.

Gary Bryant's goal wasn't enough to prevent Ninfield's run of five consecutive league successes being halted by a Hollington team which boasts 18 points from a possible 21.

Hollington stay third in the table, but now trail their victims by just three points and have two games in hand. They're also level on points with second-placed Welcroft Park Rangers having played a match fewer.

Mountfield United moved above The JC Tackleway II into the top five after beating them 3-1 away from home. Steve Thomson got the Tackleway goal.

The match between Icklesham Casuals and Bexhill AAC II was postponed.

DIVISION FOUR

The leadership of Division Four changed hands once again as Hastings Comets replaced Ticehurst at the head of affairs.

The Comets returned to the summit by dint of a 10-1 win at home to Sedlescombe Rangers development, in which Brandon Smith plundered a five-goal salvo.

Adam Gerken netted a hat-trick and Kurt Foster bagged a brace for the Comets, while Callum Ludlow claimed Sedlescombe's consolation.

Ticehurst's stay at the top lasted just a week because they were beaten 2-1 at home to Battle Town III, who leapt up two places off the bottom.

The goals of Ryan Souter and Sam Munday clinched a fine victory for Battle, and left Ticehurst a point behind the Comets.

Third-placed Sovereign Saints II could have gone above Ticehurst had they won away to fourth-placed Parkfield, but a 4-0 defeat means they remain three points adrift.

Strikes by Alfie Morris (2), Aaron French and Oliver Truman did the damage for Parkfield, who are now level on points with Saints having played a game more.

Orington rose a position to fifth after two Spencer Sharkey goals secured a 2-1 triumph at home to South Coast Athletico II. Chris Aldous found the net for Athletico.

It all means the top four sides in an intriguing division are covered by a mere four points and the same margin separates the bottom four.

DIVISION FIVE

A Reece Johnson hat-trick earned Division Five top dogs Westfield III a 3-0 win away to Welcroft Park Rangers II and preserved their six-point cushion.

Second-placed Hampden Park have three games in hand, though, and they maintained their unbeaten league record with a 2-1 victory at home to fifth-placed Burwash.

Ashley Griffiths was among the scorers for Park, while Ole Reader found the net for a Burwash outfit which stunned Westfield 7-4 the previous weekend.

Crowhurst II continue to look menacing in third place and made it 20 goals in two matches with a 7-1 success at home to Hastings Comets II.

James McGrath's hat-trick, two from Ben Thorpe and a Daniel Turner goal kept the undefeated Crows nine points back of Westfield having played four fewer fixtures. Dylan Avery nabbed the Comets' consolation.

Fourth-placed Herstmonceux II received a walkover at home to D&S Hastings Youth.

HASTINGS & DISTRICT FA JUNIOR CUP

The only cup match scheduled for last weekend didn't reach a conclusion. The Hastings & District FA Junior Cup tie between Sedlescombe Rangers II and Bexhill Rovers was abandoned.

This Saturday's schedule sees a mix of league games and Sussex Bluefin Junior Challenge Cup third-round encounters.

Standings (played-points) - Premier Division: Crowhurst 9-25 (+23 goal difference), Battle Town 9-22 (+20), Punnetts Town 10-17 (+13), Bexhill Town 9-17 (+11), St Leonards Social 9-16 (+3), Northiam 75 10-14 (-12), Hawkhurst United 11-10 (-3), Rock-a-Nore 8-5 (-7), Wadhurst United 10-5 (-20), Robertsbridge United 7-0 (-28).

Division 1: Rye Town 9-21 (+15), Bexhill AAC 8-19 (+25), Sidley United II 9-19 (+10), The JC Tackleway 8-13 (+8), SC Pass+Move Arrows 6-12 (+8), South Coast Athletico 7-10 (-2), Peche Hill Select 6-6 (-8), Battle Town II 9-3 (-24), Sedlescombe Rangers II 8-0 (-32).

Division 2: Northiam 75 II 9-18 (+10), Westfield II* 9-16 (+11), Little Common II 8-15 (+15), Catsfield 10-14 (-11), Herstmonceux 9-13 (-2), Victoria Baptists 9-11 (-4), Hooe* 8-10 (-13), Sandhurst 8-8 (0), Bexhill Rovers 8-7 (-6). * = points adjusted.

Division 3: Ninfield 9-21 (+9), Welcroft Park Rangers 8-18 (+31), AFC Hollington 7-18 (+28), Icklesham Casuals 8-12 (-7), Mountfield United 9-10 (-12), The JC Tackleway II 10-10 (-12), Bexhill AAC II 9-0 (-37). Peche Hill Select II withdrawn.

Division 4: Hastings Comets 10-22 (+20), Ticehurst 10-21 (+15), Sovereign Saints II 9-18 (+18), Parkfield 10-18 (+8), Orington 8-10 (+3), Battle Town III 10-9 (-28), Sedlescombe Rangers development 10-9 (-28), South Coast Athletico II 9-6 (-8).

Division 5: Westfield III 10-25 (+46), Hampden Park 7-19 (+36), Crowhurst II 6-16 (+41), Herstmonceux II 8-16 (+11), Burwash 10-10 (-10), Welcroft Park Rangers II 8-9 (-7), Hastings Comets II 10-7 (-37), D&S Hastings Youth 11-0 (-80). Sedlescombe Rangers IV withdrawn.

Saturday December 4 fixtures - Premier Division (2pm): Crowhurst v Rock-a-Nore, Hawkhurst United v Bexhill Town, Robertsbridge United v Wadhurst United, St Leonards Social v Battle Town.

Division 1 (2pm): Battle Town II v Sedlescombe Rangers II.

Division 2 (2pm unless stated): Bexhill Rovers v Westfield II, Herstmonceux v Hooe, Little Common II v Catsfield (4pm), Northiam 75 II v Sandhurst.

Division 3 (2pm): AFC Hollington v Mountfield United.

Division 4 (2pm unless stated): Battle Town III v Hastings Comets, Sedlescombe Rangers development v Orington, Sovereign Saints II v South Coast Athletico II, Ticehurst v Parkfield.

Division 5 (2pm): Burwash v Crowhurst II, D&S Hastings Youth v Welcroft Park Rangers II, Hastings Comets II v Herstmonceux II, Westfield III v Hampden Park.

Sussex Bluefin Junior Challenge Cup, 3rd round (1.30pm): Delunited v Bexhill AAC, Goring-by-Sea v Victoria Baptists, Ninfield v Lavant II, Optimus v Welcroft Park Rangers, SC Pass+Move Arrows v Broadwater Athletic, South Coast Athletico v Henfield, The JC Tackleway v Stedham United II.