Baldwin blasts six for new league leaders

Sean Baldwin fired a six-goal salvo to put Sidley United top of the East Sussex Football League Premier Division.

Thursday, 24th January 2019, 4:29 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 6:55 pm
Action from the Premier Travel Chauffeurs Challenge Cup quarter-final between Northiam 75 and Rye Town. Pictures by Simon Newstead

Rosh Wells chipped in with the other goal as the Blues won 7-2 away to Hawkhurst United to reach the summit for the first time this season. Mario Torres was among Hawkhurst’s scorers.

Sidley are ahead of second-placed Bexhill Town on goal difference having played an extra game and three points above third-placed Battle Baptists having played two more matches.

See also: * East Sussex Football League: Pair miss out on county cup semi-finals* Hastings United sign player from higher level club* Hastings United sink Whyteleafe thanks to Mongoy hat-trickElsewhere on another weekend when a full programme of league and cup matches was completed, there were three games in Division One.

Northiam 75 on the ball against Rye Town

With the top two not in league action, third-placed Icklesham Casuals closed in with a 4-1 victory at home to Mountfield United.

Sam Norman’s double, and one apiece from Liam Sayer and Steffan Davies lifted Icklesham within a point of second-placed Wadhurst United having played two more matches.

Fourth-placed The JC Tackleway won 4-0 away to Hollington United II to remain five points behind Icklesham with a game in hand. Kale Williams struck twice, and Charlie Cornford and Callum Fisher also found the net.

Crowhurst moved above Hollington into the top five courtesy of a 3-2 success away to Herstmonceux. Strikes by Jack Austen, Sam Burgess and Sean Lennard won it for the Crows, despite a Charles Shearing double for Ceux.

Northiam 75 in possession against Rye Town on Saturday

Battle Baptists II picked up a key victory in their quest for the Division Two title with a 3-1 win away to third-placed Sedlescombe Rangers II.

Adam How’s brace and one from Ryan Souter put second-placed Battle, who are still unbeaten and have conceded the least goals of anyone in the entire league, just two points behind leaders St Leonards Social II with three games in hand.

Peche Hill Select moved up two places to fifth on the back of a 5-0 triumph at home to Robertsbridge United II. Danny Woodley netted a hat-trick, and was joined on the scoresheet by Kieran Martin and Richard Saunders.

In Division Three, fourth-placed Bexhill Broncos ended their long winless run with a 3-1 success away to Orington.

Northiam 75 and Rye Town tussle for possession

Two Jack Harman goals and one from Marc Standen gave Broncos the points against an Orington side which has dropped to the foot of the table on goals scored despite Andy Swindles finding the net.

Hawkhurst United II jumped up two places to fifth without kicking a ball as scheduled hosts Bexhill AAC II were unable to field a team.

Hampden Park triumphed 5-3 at home to Northiam 75 II in a potentially key game in the race for the Division Four title.

The goals of Jake Barker (2), Chris Puttick (2) and William Coles for Park eclipsed those of Tyler Sargent, Alex Neville and Adam Page for Northiam.

Table-topping Park are now 12 points above fourth-placed Northiam and possess a vastly superior goal difference having played four more matches.

Second-placed Cranbrook Town ran out 3-0 winners at home to fifth-placed Battle Baptists III to remain eight points behind Park with two games in hand.

The three Division Five title contenders weren’t in league action, but the two matches involving the division’s four other teams were both closely contested.

Fourth-placed Burwash were 4-3 victors away to Hampden Park II thanks to strikes by Liam Baker (2), Blake Marchant and Max Taylor. Eddie Dunn (2) and Ricky Betsworth retaliated.

Sixth-placed Herstmonceux II prevailed 2-1 away to fifth-placed Hooe, whose scorer was Robert Pierce.

There was also plenty of cup action, including an eye-catching 2-1 victory for Division One leaders Punnetts Town at home to Premier Division title hopefuls Bexhill Town in a Robertsbridge Charity Intermediate Cup quarter-final.

Several ties were played in each of the league’s three knockout competitions.

Rye Town and Robertsbridge United went through to the semi-finals of the Premier Travel Chauffeurs Challenge Cup (for teams in the top two divisions).

Rye remain on course for a successful defence of the league’s flagship cup competition following a 2-1 win away to fellow Premier Division side Northiam 75. Rob Levett bagged a brace for Rye, while Scott Embery netted for Northiam.

Robertsbridge won 5-1 after extra-time at home to Bexhill AAC in an all-Premier Division affair which ended 10-a-side.

Guy Ballard plundered a hat-trick for the Bridge, whose other scorers were Curtis Coombes and Dominic Whittaker. Andy Atkin was on the mark for AAC.

There were also two second round games and Sedlescombe Rangers pulled off a fine 2-1 victory away to fellow Premier Division team Battle Baptists. Adam Staplehurst goal for Battle was eclipsed by the strikes of Tom Cusden and Jamie Smith for Sedlescombe.

Wadhurst United edged through 1-0 away to Bexhill United II in an all-Division One contest.

The top two in Division Three overcame Division Two opposition in the quarter-finals of the Wisdens Sports Challenge Cup.

South Coast Athletico pulled off a tremendous 7-1 win away to The JC Tackleway II and Victoria Baptists triumphed 4-3 at home to Catsfield.

Connor Easton (2), Dayle McGurk, Ryan Penney, Jack Bloomfield, Luke Darvill and Ryan Fuller were on target for Athletico against a Tackleway team whose consolation was netted by Wayne Morris.

Two James Bellett goals, and one each for Thomas Macdonald and Jake Adams earned Victoria a place in the last four. Jacob Jones (2) and Ben Newman replied for Catsfield.

Division Two outfit Rock-a-Nore will play Athletico in the semi-finals after winning 3-1 away to Division Three title hopefuls Bexhill Rovers. Two Reece Johnson goals and one from Liam Miles got the job done for the Rocks.

The semi-finals of the Cooper’s Construction Challenge Cup will feature two Division Four teams and the top two in Division Five.

Pride of place among the quarter-final results went to Welcroft Park Rangers, who are second in Division Five, for their 8-2 victory at home to Division Four side West Hill United.

Dean Smith netted a hat-trick for Welcroft Park, Jamie Bundy bagged a brace, and there was one apiece for Lee Taylor, Charlie Smith and Jordon Cull. Tyler Smith claimed both of West Hill’s goals.

Little Common III prevailed 4-3 after extra-time away to AFC Hollington in a clash between the teams lying third and first in Division Five.

The goals of Connor Morton, Kit Macrae Harris, Connor Jackson and Conor Chilton for Common just eclipsed those of Damien Bourne, Kelvin Lowes and Rhys Warren for Hollington.

Parkfield scraped through 7-6 on penalties after their quarter-final away to fellow Division Four side Sedlescombe Rangers III was level at 2-2 at the end of extra-time. Luke Brundle netted both of Sedlescombe’s goals, while Matt Holland and Mark Allen struck for Parkfield.

Sovereign Saints II won 3-1 at home to Icklesham Casuals II in another all-Division Four encounter. Lee Pierce netted Icklesham’s consolation.

The semi-finals will see Saints host Common and Welcroft Park entertain Parkfield.

League games are scheduled for all six divisions this coming Saturday along with matches in no less than seven cup competitions, including quarter-finals in the three Hastings & District FA cups.