Irvine is the thorn in Littleport’s side
CUP MATCHES LITTLEPORT Town achieved a rather unusual double last week, losing narrowly to Soham Town Rangers in the first round of the Cambs Invitation Cup and then going down by the odd goal in seven against that club s reserve side in the first round o
LITTLEPORT Town achieved a rather unusual double last week, losing narrowly to Soham Town Rangers in the first round of the Cambs Invitation Cup and then going down by the odd goal in seven against that club's reserve side in the first round of the Cambs Challenge Cup.
'Port boss Dave Cullum had been a happy man after the midweek clash with Soham's first team.
"We were superb for 80 minutes," said Littleport's manager after the 2-0 defeat. "It was a cracking game."
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Rangers eventually broke the deadlock with a deflected shot in the 81st minute, and Alex Irvine made the tie safe late on.
'Port had the misfortune to encounter Irvine again on Saturday however, and his early goals provided the platform for a shock 4-3 Rangers victory - their first of the season.
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Nigel Smith cancelled out Irvine's opener with a great header, but Irvine made it 2-1.
Will Ludbrooke restored parity again before half-time, and Sean Ambrose put the hosts in front for the first time with a deflected effort in the second half.
Sam Cooper made it 3-3 with 15 minutes remaining however, and Ross Knappett's close-range goal in the closing stages sealed victory for the underdogs.
Fordham also made it through thanks to a last gasp goal from Daniel Alcock in the home clash with Leverington Sports.
Ely City Reserves progressed with second-half goals from Andy Chatters, substitute David Cornwell and goalkeeper Leigh Follen (penalty) at the expense of hosts Whittlesey United, but Haddenham Rovers went down by the odd goal in five against Outwell Swifts.
Phil Harle and Kenny Holmes provided Rovers with a 2-0 interval lead, but the visitors pulled one back immediately after the break and then took advantage of John Lee's harsh dismissal to run out 3-2 winners.
In the Creake Charity Shield, Division 1B leaders Ely City A were beaten for the first time this season, losing 3-1 at Thaxted Rangers.
SENIOR DIVISION B
LITTLEPORT Town drew 0-0 at Bluntisham Rangers on Saturday, but have now taken just two points from a possible 18.
THE Vine claimed their first three points of the season at the expense of local rivals Sutton United.
Jon Cutter put them ahead with a fine shot from the edge of the box, and he then made it 2-1 on the stroke of half-time after the visitors had got back on terms.
Stretham Hotspurs meanwhile gave a much improved performance at home to Witchford '96, but still went down 2-1 after leading at half-time thanks to a cracking header from Gary Careless.
Isleham United lost 3-2 at home to Wisbech St Mary Reserves and goals from Russell Boneham and Anthony Binns, but Pymoor FC were humiliated 8-0 on their own territory by Hemingfords United Reserves.
ELY Crusaders maintained their 100 per cent record with a hard-fought 4-2 win against Huntingdon United RGE Reserves.
Phil Shepherd's opener was cancelled out before half-time, but Luke Schunmann's second-half double made it 3-1 and Wes Reid restored Ely's two-goal advantage with an 80th-minute penalty after Schunmann had been pole-axed.
Mepal Sports are still hot on the heels of the leaders after edging out Soham United Reserves 2-1, and Little Downham Swifts were also successful in their home clash with Wisbech St Mary A.
Man of the match James Staith - in an unfamiliar striking role - opened the scoring, and leading marksman Gareth Draper made it 2-1 but was badly hurt.
Wisbech's goalkeeper also had to depart through injury after his side had equalised, and Swifts - for whom midfielders Scott Holmes and Luke Williams were in fine form - came through 4-2 with further goals from John Bartlett and Lewis Chambers.
Fordham Reserves were deprived of a win deep into injury time at St Ives Town A.
Clive Boucheron, Jamie Peacock and Shane Woodcock put them 3-2 in front, but the hosts snatched a draw in time added on.
Haddenham Rovers Reserves were thrashed 9-0 away to leaders March Rangers.
SIXTEEN-YEAR-OLD Ben Reed was the star of the show as Wicken Amateurs shared six goals with Outwell Swifts Reserves.
Jamie Palmer fired Wicken's opener after Reed had nodded the ball on, and the same player was on target again with a near-post head from Reed's pinpoint cross.
Neil Bulman poked home Reed's flick-on to make it 3-2 with nine minutes remaining, but Outwell had enough time left to salvage a point.
Carl Saxby and Danny Jones both scored twice as Burwell Swifts maintained their unblemished record with a 4-1 victory at Milton A and The Vine Reserves were also successful away from home, winning 2-0 at Littleport Town A thanks to Justin Challis's double.
BURWELL Swifts Reserves striker Tom Thatcher helped himself to four goals and Simon Hurrion was the major provider as Swifts beat March Rangers Reserves 6-2.
Dave Fordham opened the scoring, and Hurrion was also on target, but it was Thatcher's late hat-trick that finally condemned the visitors to defeat.
Little Downham Swifts Reserves scored two penalties at Wisbech Fen Stars. Nicky Martin and substitute Mark Driver were on target, but were eventually beaten 4-2.
AN open game in the Senior Division saw newcomers Ely Park Rangers outscore Triple-S by seven goals to four.
Andrew Lee led the home charge with four goals and was accompanied on the scoresheet by Rory Hutton (2) and Dave Cornwell.
Triple-S had Scott Fretwell (3) and Ben Howe to thank for their contribution to the 7-4 scoreline.
Ely's Division 1A Reserves were beaten 3-1 at Magpies 2001 despite a goal from Robert Parker, and in Division 4A there was a 7-0 defeat awaiting Little Downham United at Arbury Akademiks.
Ely Pymoor Rangers were in Tucker Gardner Partnership Division Two action on Sunday, but were beaten 4-2 at Waterbeach Wanderers despite second-half goals from Stephen Footer and Joe Featherstone.
In the second round of the Shelford Energy Cup there was a 5-1 defeat for Wicken Maids Head at Ashwell Reserves, but there was better news for local sides in the Cambs FA Millenium Cup.
Wilburton Albion made it to the second round as goals from Will Ludbrooke (4) and Ed Ideson (2) earned a 6-0 win against Village Inn, and Fox Burwell joined them with a 3-0 success at Newnham Rangers.
Lee Read nodded home a John Irvine cross to make it 1-0 at the break, and Carl Saxby doubled the advantage after a darting run before clinching the tie by converting Tom Thatcher's cross.
QPR Ely entertained Girton Eagles Reserves, but went out 4-3 on penalties after the tie had finished 1-1.