Witney & District Reports - Week 26

By john smyth

Aston Narrowly beaten in Shield Semi Final By David Evans

John Fathers Oxon Junior Shield

Aston hopes of reaching the Junior Shield were crucially denied by Bicester Athletic on Saturday night.
Aston were roared on by the majority of the 250 strong crowd and the made the perfect start taking the lead inside 10 minutes, Nick Angus made a great run down the left and his cross was turned home by skipper Lewis Scott. Scott then turned provider as his corner was met by the stopping head of Aaron Robins to make it 2-0. The lead though was soon halved a chipped ball over the top was met by Paul Brown and he deftly clipped the ball over Ash Edwards. It was Brown again 10 mins later stepping up to calmly slot home a penalty. Aston almost retook the lead again just before the interval, Sam Aston picked the ball up and let fly from 25 yards and the ball struck the bar with the keeper well beaten. They bought a breathless half to close.
The second half was always going to be a bit of an anti-climax and neither side could really get a foothold in the game. Aston again struck the bar with 15 mins remaining, this time it was left back who hit a screamer but again it hit wood rather than net. Then with about 10 left Bicester grabbed the winner and once again it was MOM Brown who scored. He just got his toe to a through ball ahead of Edwards and sent the Bicester crowd delirious. Aston tried everything to get an equaliser but it was not to be and Bicester progressed to the final.

Premier Division

Hailey took a huge stride towards the Premier Division title as they defeated nearest rivals Stonesield 3-2.
The home side started strongly with a stiff breeze behind them. James Barker skipped and a couple of tackles and slid Raffy Rice in, he went round Cody Davies in the Hailey goal and slotted home. But the lead did not last long, a corner was not cleared and Jack Wood flicked the loose ball home. They then took the lead, Jordan Newman's back pass was underhit and Freddie Buckingham rounded Lewis Kemp and cut the ball back to Nathan Kimber who scuffed his shot but it still nestled in the corner.
The game was being played at a fast pace now and then Stonesfield were awarded a penalty, Carry Rice was bought down by Davies and he picked himself up to place the penalty in the corner. Then in the final seconds of the half, Hailey were awared a free kick on the edge of the box. Kimber stepped up to curl it around the wall and into the far corner.
The second half was dominated by the visitors and they spurned a number of chances, Wood missed 2 headers that seemed easier to score and several crosses flashed across the goal. They should have made it safe with 10 left, Joey Aust was bought dowm and Kimber stepped up and thumped his penalty against the left hand post and out. That should have inspired Stonesfield for a late comeback, but Hailey were comfortably able to see the game out and stretch their lead at the top of the table to 4 points with games in hand.

A late double from Hook Norton was enough to see them edge past Carterton Rangers at
Kilkenny Lane. With a howling wind blowing down the pitch it was somewhat a surprise
when Rangers decided to face into the wind during the first half, keeper Daniel Floyd
struggling to send any of his goal kicks beyond halfway. Hook Norton had the better of the
exchanges as well with Jay Mair and Max Bayliss both spurning opportunities when through
on goal. Dan Bott blazed over from twenty yards out and Floyd made two smart saves from
close range from shots inside the box. However, it was Rangers who had the best chance of
the opening half, a mix up in the back four saw Aaron Lewis take a quick-fire shot at goal
only to see it catch in the wind and move agonisingly wide.
The second half saw a change in momentum as Rangers started the stronger of the two.
James Murphy going close with an effort and Ryan Clish seeing a strong penalty shout
waved away by the referee. Not that Hooky were quiet, Floyd once again called upon for a
close range save after a clever flick from Mair, who had his own, somewhat weaker penalty
claim also waved away.
The deadlock was finally broken in the last five minutes as Hook Norton grabbed the lead
and in fine style too. As the ball broke twenty five yards out, Dan Bott hit a swirling volley
which cruelly evaded Floyd in the goal and hit the back of the net. Rangers went in search of
an equaliser naturally leaving them more exposed at the back and a through ball for Jay Mair
put him one on one with Floyd and he rolled the ball under the diving keeper to secure all
three points.

Hanborough returned to winning ways with a close 1-0 win over Enstone. Craig Johnson
scored the only goal of the game to earn the three points which saw Boro return to second
spot in the league.

Craig McCallum scored the only goal of the game for Charlbury in a victory which means
that opponents Milton can no longer catch them this season. Milton heartbreakingly fell to
their tenth defeat of the season and now must win all of their three remaining games to have
any hope of overhauling Spartan Rangers in eighth.

Division One

Dan Brearley’s goal was enough to put Minster Lovell again as they beat
Chadlington 1-0 at Wash Meadow. The three points puts Minster one point ahead of
Freeland although the latter do have two games in hand.

Luke Perkins scored for the second game running as he helped Hailey Reserves also win by
a single goal. In the battle at the bottom, against bottom side Kingham, Perkins’ goal gave
Hailey their first home win of the season and a crucial one as they jumped above Wootton in
the table.

Wootton and Bampton shared the points and 4 goals in an entertaining draw. Dan Mundy-Court and a rare goal from Luke Leggett wwre on target for the home side. Whilst John Webb and Kieron Colley replied.

Junior Cup 1st Round

The last of the cups to be played each season are the Senior Cup, Junior Cup and
Supplementary Cup. Which competitions a side enters depends on which league they are in.
The Junior Cup is played out between sides from Division One and Two, with Division Two
side Ducklington the current holders of the trophy.
Only one game in the opening round, Witney Royals, third in Division One hosted Division
Two’s second bottom Spartan Rangers Reserves. Andy Horne and Matt Swiergon scored a
goal each for Spartan to give them hope of an upset but Luke Colville, Kieran Colwell, Kyle
Grimmett and Corey Donohue all scored one each in a 4-2 win for Royals.

Division Two

There were no fixtures played in Division Two this week. Cassington Rangers and
Ducklington were awarded walkover victories against Combe and Hook Norton Reserves
respectively

Division Three

Champions Faringdon Town A were awarded a walkover victory against Wootton Reserves

Supplementary Cup 1st Round

The Supplementary Cup is played out between sides from Division Three and Four. We are
guaranteed new winners this season after Bampton Reserves ended their campaign earlier
this season.
There were two games in the opening round. Division Four champions, Hatherop Reserves
stormed to a 5-0 victory over FC Mills. David Legg’s hat-trick ensured his wonderful season
in front of goal continued and further strikes from Richard Stearn and Craig Whitbread
secured a place in round two.

Tyler Webster hit a phenomenal hat-trick as Carterton Town FC got their first win of the
season in brilliant style by beating Spartan Rangers A 5-1. The bottom two sides in Division
Four may not have been expected to produce a goal fest, having only scored 30 goals in 38
league games this season. But Carterton found their form to advance into round two. Mev
Gundem hit back for Spartan but Fenn Carey and Luke Smith’s goals put Carterton firmly in
charge and easily in the next round.

Division Four

Just the one game in Division Four, with Kingham Reserves and Sherborne Harriers unable
to be separated as they shared four goals and the points in an entertaining draw. Josh
Betteridge scored both goals for Sherborne but Jack Eley and Jake Godfrey’s goals earned
Kingham their first draw of the season as both sides left with a point.

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