Margate hit (by) the Rocks!

By Ian Townsend

Bognor hit six, Bowers get back to winning ways, the Tanners march on, and Cray climb to fourth. It’s our round up of the action across League and Trophies.

Premier Division

Bognor Regis Town have been in rather magnificent form recently, and travelled to Margate last night on the back of six consecutive victories. Gate must have expected a difficult game, but they can’t have imagined quite how difficult it would be, as a second half onslaught saw the Rocks run out six-one winners.

Bognor were two up inside eleven minutes, Dan Smith and James Crane warming up the travelling faithful, but when Adem Ramadan reduced the arrears two minutes after the break the home support inside Hartsdown Park must have expected that the comeback had begun. Instead the match went in entirely the opposite direction, as Ashton Leigh, Arron Hopkinson, Doug Tuck and Crane with his second left the Blues with the blues.

Bognor climb to eighth, one place and one point ahead of another team in fine form, Leatherhead. The Tanners signed notable striking reinforcement yesterday-read about that elsewhere, shortly- but eased to their eighth straight victory in all competitions with a two-one win over Corinthian-Casuals. Eddie Dsane put them ahead in the very first minute, Ibrahim Olutade got their second on the half hour, and although Bradley Wilson had pulled a goal back before the break the scoring stopped there.

There was only one goal in the match between Wingate & Finchley and Cray Wanderers, and it came early, and it came to the visitors. Joel Rollinson got it in the third minute, lifting Wands to fourth.

Bowers and Pitsea have been on a terrible run, without a league victory since August 17th- but last night they finally gave the Len Salmon faithful something to cheer about, defeating Bishop’s Stortford to climb out of the bottom three. A goal in each half did the damage, Callum Leahy getting the first just after the half hour, Brad Warner the second seven minutes after the break. That’s the visiting Blues fifth consecutive defeat in all competitions.

In the FA Trophy, it as a magnificent night for Bedfont Sports. Opponents Hitchin Town, from Southern Premier Central, were held on their own patch at the weekend, and were held again at the end of the Heathrow runway last night, Imran Uche getting a last minute equaliser in a one-one draw. The match went to penalties, and Sports triumphed 5-4!

Sports are a round behind the rest, and in the Second Qualifying Round Carshalton Athletic were facing Frome Town. The Robins had to put the disappointment of Saturday’s FA Cup First Round defeat behind them, and that’s exactly what they did, winning an eight goal thriller by five goals to three. Tommy Bradford got two goals, Christie Pattison got two more, and Ricky Korboa got their opener.

Hastings United are also through to the Third Qualifying Round, and they had to come from behind to get there, defeating Whitehawk by two goals to one. Kacper Lopata put the Hawks ahead before the break, but a Davide Rodari double in the second half gave United victory. Westfield sadly bowed out in their replay, despite Tinashe Nkoma opening the scoring. Hosts Hartley Wintney got two for victory.

Heading back to Monday, Aveley managed a superb victory against Taunton Town. The Somerset side, in sixth place in Southern Premier South, were outplayed in the first half at Parkside, and Alex Akrofi and Jason Raad gave the Millers a two-nil lead at the break. The visitors did get a goal back in the second half, but it came in the very last minute, and was too little, too late.

North Division

We had one match in the North Division, and the three points on offer went to Canvey Island. The Gulls fell behind to visitors Brentwood Town, Andy Freeman with an eighth minute opener, but were level before the break through Kane Gilbert, and ahead just after it through Tobi Joseph. Town levelled through Connor Hogan in the sixty seventh minute, but parity lasted only sixty seconds before Albert Levett- who had only been on the field for two minutes- got what proved to be the winner.

South Central

Our single South Central match saw Barking go ahead, go behind, and then win comfortably. Eddie Allsopp got their opener on sixteen minutes, but by half time visitors Chertsey Town had turned the game on its head due to a Jake Baxter double. After the interval Barking came out firing, Michael Dixon getting two to restore the home advantage, and Junior Dadson putting the icing on the blue cake nine minutes from time.

South East

Phoenix Sports moved back into the top five with a two-one win over Faversham Town, but they had to come from behind and left it late to clinch victory. Max Morgan put the visitors ahead in the first half, but Jack Hopkins equalised for Sports seven minutes after half time and Ben Allen got the winner four minutes from time.

We had a seven goal thriller at Whyteleafe, and it saw visitors Ashford United get back to winning ways by scoring a winner three minutes from time. Junior Aikhionbare gave Leafe an early lead, and David Smith got the Nuts and Bolts equaliser to make it one-one at the break. An own goal gave the visitors the lead, only for Peter Wedgeworth to level on the hour, but Smith’s second with seventeen minutes remaining made it advantage Ashford once more. Nathan Campbell’s goal with nine minutes remaining looked to have given the home side a point, but there was still time for Jay May to steal all three and delight the travelling faithful.

Velocity Trophy

In Group One, a double from Cemal Ramadan and a third from Emmanuel Machaya gave Bury Town victory at AFC Sudbury, for whom Ben Hunter got a consolation.

Group Three saw ware wallop Harlow Town five-nil, with two from Liam Hope, and one each from Leigh Rose, David Kendall and Kyle Roberts, whilst Group Four saw Haywards Heath Town and Three Bridges draw 1-1, before Bridges won the shootout 5-4 to take the extra point. Callum Saunders scored for Heath, Andre McCollin equalised for the visitors.

Group Six saw David Knight continue his record of a goal every game for Tilbury, who defeated Great Wakering Rovers 2-1. Ola Ogunwamide got the Dockers second, Stephen Butterworth scored for Rovers.

Group Seven saw Herne Bay arrive at Whitstable Town and deliver a thumping to their hosts, winning four-one. Penalties from Zak Ansah and Victor Aiyelabola sandwiched an own goal and one from Bradley Stevenson for Bay, whilst Harry Stannard got a consolation for the Oysterboys.

Into Group Eight, and Northwood got back to winning ways when Ethan Flanagan got the only goal of the game against Uxbridge, whilst Staines Town did the same, Arif Hattabi and Yahya El-Khabouche easing them to victory over Ashford Town.

Finally, Group Nine saw a Tommy Whitnell double for Sevenoaks Town earn them a draw with VCD Athletic, for whom Harry Sergent and Henry Ikeije found the net. Town then won the extra point by winning the penalty shotout four-three.

We have three FA Trophy fixtures tonight. Kingstonian travel to Blackfield & Langley, Soham Town Rangers head to Hayes & Yeading United, whilst we have a clash of the titans as Maldon & Tiptree entertain Folkestone Invicta.

Where next?

Tanners strengthen their strikeforce Tonbridge hitman heads to Fetcham Grove
Romford management team departs New investor quick to ring the changes

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