[I]n a weekend of football badly affected by the heavy midweek rain and freeze, and with Keswick, Division One leaders in the James Cropper Westmorland League having to postpone their match against Ambleside United after their Fitz Park pitch flooded on Wednesday, second placed Appleby took the opportunity to close the gap at the top to just three points with a hard fought 3-2 win over Shap.
Appleby went 2-0 up in the first half with goals from Bobby Atkinson and Jack Overs, but this was no pushover, and the talented young Shap team came out strongly in the second half and made Appleby battle for the win and the three points, and Shap’s Luke Fraser scored two second half goals to make it level before Josh Hall got the winner for Appleby.
Endmoor are into third place in Division One on the back of an 2-3 away win at Frenchfield over Penrith Reserves. Goals from Adam Soulby, Sam Daws and Nathan Dixon earned the win in a tight, end to end match, with Penrith’s replies from Lee Stockdale and Danny Burrus. The two sides meet again next weekend in the High Sheriff’s Cup in Kendal. In the only other surviving Division One match, Wetheriggs United lost 0-4 at home to Ibis, with Luke Deveney scoring a brace for the visitors along with goals for Darren Braithwaite and Shaun Askew. Penrith are sixth, Wetheriggs are seventh and Ibis are in eighth place in the table.
In Division Two there were more weather related cancellations with the matches at Braithwaite, Staveley and Ullswater all postponed. There were just two matches, and AFC Carlisle lost 1-2 at home to Appleby Reserves, and are now in ninth spot with Appleby one point above in eighth. A 92nd minute Chris Irwin goal saw Carleton Banks earn a point against a very strong Windermere SC Reserves team who looked handy in a match which ended 1-1. The Soccermoos go second in Division Two, now with two games in hand over leaders Dent and equal with third placed Keswick Reserves in what looks like a three way battle for the divisional title.
In Division Three, Burneside won out 7-3 Langwathby United to go into third place with Langwathby in tenth. In the Peter Daws Memorial Shield in was second placed against top with the first meeting of the season between Ibis Reserves and Kirkby Stephen at the Jubilee Playing Fields in Kendal. Kirkby won this with a comfortable 1-5 scoreline.
From the off Kirkby took control on a very tough playing surface and early pressure from the visitors proved successful when a Dan Robinson free kick rebounded off the bar and Dragos Dorcea was waiting at the back post and headed home for 1-0. The second goal came on the 20 minute mark with Andy Lockhart slotting the ball past the Ibis ‘keeper after a patient Kirby Stephen build up.
Ibis then got a foothold in the game after being awarded a penalty, and whilst ‘keeper Steven Lawrence pulled off a good save, Ibis’s Ross Swidenbank responded the quickest and grabbed a goal back. The next goal was from another penalty after Kirkby’s Jason Chappelow was brought down in the box, with Dan Robinson stepping up and slotting home to make it 3-1. Next up a fantastic piece of play down the right wing from sixteen year old Joe Bainbridge put through Lockhart for his second of the day, and finally Dorcea scored his second and the visitors fifth of the day to wrap things up.
In the second Peter Daws Memorial Shield match, Sedbergh Wanderers Football Club Reserves had a very close 2 -1 win over Penrith Academy in a match moved to Frenchfield. Academy lost in extra time after going 1-0 up after 18 minutes from a Taryn Reay header. It was 1-1 at full time but the scoreline reflects a host of missed chances at both ends – and two goals for Alex Fearns for the Visitors.
There was also one Westorland FA Junior Cup second round tie, and Kirkoswald Reserves lost 1-2 to Dent from the Division above, with Dent’s goals from Nathan Close and Tom Thexton and Kirkoswald’s reply a superb effort from Ben Allen.
The weather caused havoc to fixtures in the Smurfit Kappa Cumberland County League with match after match cancelled with pitches unplayable, and just two matches went ahead. In the Benevolent Cup, the match between Silloth and Cockermouth ended 3-3 after extra time, with the Seagulls’ goals from Lewis Little, Dan Foster and Adam Carr, and Cockermouth’s goals from a Mike Graham brace and Paul Williamson.
But it was Cockermouth who prevailed and knocked out the holders 4-1 on penalties. In Division One, the derby match between Whitehaven Amateurs and Whitehaven Miners ended as a 1-1 draw with Josh Green and Bradley Glaister on the score sheet.