After the matches involving leaders Dulwich Hamlet and second place Billericay Town were washed out once more, Folkestone Invicta had the opportunity to go back to the top of the Premier Division by beating rivals Margate. They couldn’t take advantage in a hard-fought match, however, falling behind to a Frannie Collin strike before an Adam Yusuff penalty earned them a share of the spoils with eleven minutes to go. Invicta remain third whilst Margate are fifth, separated by a Hendon side who also only managed a point yesterday, a penalty double from Niko Muir cancelling out goals from Inti Rapai and Marc Charles-Smith at local rivals Wingate & Finchley.
Staines Town and Leiston saw their matches washed out, allowing Leatherhead to close the gap on the playoff places to seven points with a comprehensive victory over Tooting & Mitcham United at Imperial Fields. A double from Tom Derry was added to by D’Sean Theobalds and Reece Williams-Bowers before the Terrors nabbed a last minute consolation from Jordan Wilson. Other comprehensive winners were Harrow Borough, who followed up a goalless first half by walloping Enfield Town for five, doubles from Kurtis Cumberbatch and Ryan Moss sandwiching a Shaun Preddie goal at Earlsmead- a victory which takes Harrow above Enfield into sixteenth.
Worthing- whose fans have begun a concerted campaign to make Adam Hinshelwood manager of the year- cemented their place in the Premier Division for another season with a 3-2 win over Merstham. George Barker- on his debut- and Harvey Sparks gave the Mackerel Men a two goal lead before Reece Hall reduced the arrears, but a third from Ben Pope meant that Tutu Henriques 89th minute consolation remained only that as Worthing took the points and briefly went into fourteenth place, before being passed once more by Dorking Wanderers, courtesy of their 2-1 win over Burgess Hill Town which you can read about HERE.
Harlow Town did their survival chances a power of good, recovering a one man and one goal half time deficit to emerge victorious at home to Thurrock. Fabion Simms gave them the lead before Ronnie Winn and Lewwis Spence- and a red card for Hawks Robbie Martin- put Thurrock in the driving seat, but goals from Christian Scales and Jared Small kept all three points in Harlow.
Finally, a Billy Hunt double condemned Lowestoft Town to defeat at Brightlingsea Regent, who move up to nineteenth.
Much of the North Division was washed away, and two of the three games that survived ended up being played at Aveley. In the first of those Brentwood Town hosted AFC Hornchurch, but must have wished they hadn’t bothered as the Urchins ran out 6-1 winners to remain ten points clear at the top of the table. It was 0-4 by half time, Tobi Joseph, Nathan Cooper, George Purcell and Christian Asombalonga with the goals, and Assombalonga was able to complete his hat trick after the break before Brenden Cavalier laughed his way to a last minute consolation.
Second place Potters Bar Town couldn’t quite manage six away goals, but they did get four, at Ware. Sandro Costa Dias Fernandes (thank goodness we don’t have names on our shirts, he’d need an XXXXL) put the Scholars ahead with a first half double, before Ben Ward-Cochrane made it three on fifty minutes. Jordon Watson pulled one back from the spot, but Bar weren’t to be denied and Eoin Casey made sure with eleven minutes remaining.
In the evening kick off, Aveley finally got to play on their own pitch- and did so with some style, goals from Myles Keizer-Borrows, Tom Richardson and Calvin Ekpiteta giving them a 3-0 victory over fourth place Canvey Island.
The South Division, with a couple of exceptions, escaped the worst of the weather. One of those exceptions were leaders Lewes, and they saw their lead at the top cut to just two points by Carshalton Athletic, for whom Ryan Healey struck a last minute winner to beat South Park. The Robins have a game in hand on the Rooks, too.
Greenwich Borough are third, and they will be disappointed at only picking up a point at fourth place Cray Wanderers yesterday, given they were twice ahead. Jack Barham scored both of Borough’s goals, but on both occasions their lead was cancelled out by a penalty, Charlie MacDonald with the first before Michael Power got the second deep into added time. Fifth played sixth, too, as Corinthian-Casuals travelled to Walton Casuals, but goals were hard to come by and there weren’t any, leaving both sides to end as they began.
The big winners of the day were Hastings United, who will have been delighted not only by the scoreline and the manner of their victory at East Grinstead Town yesterday but by the fact that eleven of their side were teenagers, which bodes rather well for next season. They struck seven times against the Wasps at College Lane, four of those falling to Davide Rodari, whilst Ollie Rowe, Sonny Dullaway and Dajon Golding also found the net. Stephane Bombelenga got a last gasp consolation for the home side.
In what may be the closest derby match in England- we scoff at your Nottingham Forest v Notts County- VCD Athletic travelled (if that’s the word) to Phoenix Sports and left with three goals and three points. Alfie Cue hit an early double, and a second half goal from Jeffery Gyamfi gave them the local bragging rights. Elsewhere in Kent, Hythe Town continued their good form with a 2-1 win at Herne Bay, the winner coming from that man Zak Ansah, rather predictably, after Danny Leonard had given Bay an early lead and Chris Kinnear had equalised. Town are now four points behind Walton Casuals in the hunt for the final playoff spot. Ramsgate and Sittingbourne shared the points with a goal each, Oliver Gray and David Smith with those, whilst a Dean Grant double, added to by Brandon Williams, gave Ashford United a 3-1 win over Faversham Town, for whom Mobolaji Dawodu scored.
Whyteleafe got a game on their own ground after first lending it to South Park and then to Dorking Wanderers, and goals from Tommy Hutchings and Vance Bola gave them all three points despite a Molesey consolation from Bukele Mukudi, whilst finally the Channel Islands were happy as a Paris Pereira double gave the Green Lions of Guernsey victory over Chipstead.
Tonight, Billericay Town will host Tonbridge Angels- once more at Aveley- whilst Barking entertain Tilbury.