New Year's Day North Division review

1 year ago By David Watters

There are new leaders of the EVO-STIK League North, Prescot Cables starting 2018 on top after they hammered Skelmersdale and long-time leaders South Shields were beaten by Scarborough Athletic in the game of the day, writes Pitchero's Steve Whitney.

A terrific crowd of 1,819 at Mariners Park saw Shields beaten in the league for the first time since Colwyn Bay beat them on September 9th at Llanelian Road. And the 3-1 win for Boro moved them up to third, level on points with Shields, who still have games in hand.

Michael Coulson gave Boro the lead just past the half-hour mark when Shields` keeper Liam Connell was adjudged to have brought him down. Eight minutes later, it was the away fans who were cheering again as Nathan Valentine doubled their advantage.

Seven minutes into the second half, Max Wright delivered the killer blow to Shields with a third for Boro, rendering Jamie Holmes` stoppage time reply as just a consolation.

Prescot Cables' excellent season saw them start the New Year as leaders after inflicting a 6-1 hammering on tenants Skelmersdale at Volair Park.

Chris Almond completed a hat-trick in the opening 15 minutes to put Cables in command, and he added a fourth on the half-hour mark. Lloyd Dean made it a nap hand 11 minutes into the second half with Dan Burns adding the sixth in the 84th minute. Skem did have the final say with a Jack Fleming effort three minutes later.

Hyde United, who also possess games in hand, are now fourth after beating Glossop North End 2-0 in front of a crowd of 657 at Ewen Fields, Tom Pratt after 16 minutes and Declan Howe four minutes from time, the Tigers` scorers.

Hyde moved above Bamber Bridge, who were held to a 2-2 draw at Colwyn Bay, who twice fought back from being behind.

Jamie Milligan broke the deadlock to give Brig the lead five minutes into the second half, only for new signing Elliot Rokka to level on the hour-mark. Ali Waddecar restored Brig`s lead 10 minutes from time, but a stoppage time Will Booth goal secured a point for Bay.

Trafford moved into sixth after they won 1-0 at Atherton Collieries, thanks to a 55th minute Keil O`Brien goal, moving above Droylsden, who were held to a goalless draw at Seel Park by Mossley AFC in the Tameside derby.

A tremendous free-kick from Adam Priestley on the stroke on half-time gave Ossett Albion victory and local bragging rights at Ingfield against Ossett Town in front of another big New Year's Day crowd of 497.

Bottom-markers Goole AFC are nine points adrift now after going down to a 3-2 defeat at the Victoria Pleasure Grounds to Colne, whose Ollie Crankshaw gave them an early fifth minute lead.

Alex Curran added a second on 35 minutes but a header from Grant Allott pulled Goole back into the game just before the break. Declan Howe equalised on the hour-mark but a second for Curran in the 73rd minute sealed Colne`s win.

Clitheroe won 3-0 at home against Kendal Town, thanks to second half goals from Alex Newby with two and Kurt Willoughby, while Radcliffe FC won their derby at Stainton Park against Ramsbottom United 3-1.

Kingsley Williams gave the home side a 35th minute lead that Szymon Czubik doubled on 66 minutes. Alex Meaney reduced the deficit two minutes later but new signing Henoc Mukendi made it 3-1 with a minute left to play.

And Tadcaster Albion earned local bragging rights with a 5-0 hammering of second-bottom Brighouse Town. Aiden Savory scored the only goal of the opening period, then Tom Corner bagged a brace, sandwiched by efforts from Joe Pugh and Josh Greening.

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Where next?

New Year's honours for winning trio Altrincham, Basford United and Droylsden are the EVO-STIK League's final performance kings of 2017!
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