Patchett swoops late to foil Shelf

Bottom side Shelf United were denied a first Premier Division win of the season by Danny Patchett’s late volley for visitors Holmfield.

The Haslem-Sheppard Halifax AFL contest finished 3-3 and while the visitors thought that was a fair result, Shelf were disappointed not to have won after an improved display in which two-goal Dan Agar and Danny Thornton showed up well.

Holmfield took the lead down the Shelf Park slope through Jordan Pettifor’s header approaching the 15-minute mark but Agar and Johnny Lister netted to give the hosts an interval lead.

Gareth Gaukroger lobbed the home keeper on the hour to make it 2-2 but a fine Shelf move, which produced a goal for Agar, looked to have won it for the hosts before Patchett struck the ball over the keeper with four minutes left.

Holmfield came away grateful for some second half saves from Craig Lobley while right back Luke Ashton also played well.

Greetland beat champions Elland United 2-1 in a Premier Division derby, the impressive Tom Wall scoring what proved to be the winner just before half time.

Both teams looked rusty and struggled to retain possession on a heavy Goldfields pitch.

Matty Oldfield and sent his midfield partner Carl Ainley through and his shot from 20 yards stung the Elland keeper’s hands.

Elland were always a threat on the break through Mark Kelsey and Carlton Balmer, who had a goal ruled out for offside by well-placed referee John Hallos.

This seemed to spur Greetland and when Jimmy Highley found Adam Oldfield on the right wing, his excellent cross enabled Danny Dorward to head the hosts in front.

Mark Heppenstall, playing against his former club, then started making inroads in the Elland defence and was twice denied by excellent saves.

Just when it looked as though Greetland would add a second, Elland’s Tom Mellor beat the offside trap and although he slipped while shooting, he prodded the ball home with his second attempt.

The home side hit back with efforts from Paul Gee and Andy Hurcombe before a four player move enabled Wall to break through and slot home via a post.

The game fizzled out in the second half with both teams out of sorts. Greetland were denied a penalty when Heppenstall went down and Jonny Crowther and Danny Hutchinson went close for them.

Play finished on a sour note for the home side when Carl Ainley had to leave the pitch with a torn ear that required 15 stitches after a collision in the Elland penalty area.

Midgley took advantage of Stump Cross’s inactivity to stretch their lead at the top, winning 2-1 away to Copley United.

Much-vaunted strike pair Tom Booth and George Bamford missed a hatful of chances in the second half as the table-toppers found their form.

Copley started the brighter but play was fairly even until midway through the first half when Joe Gibson put through his own goal from a free kick, lifting the home side.

The visitors scored twice in five minutes approaching the mid-point of the second half, Bamford finishing neatly after going through one-on-one with the ‘keeper and Greg Spink scoring with a lovely left foot shot from the edge of the box.

The game faded out late on with Copley never really threatening to equalise.

Sowerby United came out 2-1 on top of a very close game at Warley Rangers on a very heavy pitch.

Sowerby produced some fine attacking play from the off with Andrew Wadsworth, returning after being injured in the second game of the season, to the fore.

Joseph Swallow was also causing Warley big problems and following his clever play, Adam Kershaw had a shot blocked and Wadsworth followed up to score.

Warley drew level early in the second half when Johnny Burston got the faintest of touches to a deep cross and headed home.

Warley pressed hard but veteran Garry Boyd led the Sowerby defensive effort and Paul Barker made an excellent save.

Swallow and Lee Barber then combined to open up the Warley defence and Chris Punda drilled home the winner in a game which flowed well thanks to referee Peter Bowe.

Hebden Royd Red Star retained their four-point lead over Sowerby Bridge at the top of Division One, from one game more, after the pair drew 3-3.

Bridge were without top scorer Martyn Bates (work) but took the game to their hosts with Matthew Whitworth and Jimmy Sweeney linking up well with Richard Hirst and Lee Wood.

They took the lead when Hirst’s delicate through ball for Wood was missed by on-rushing goalkeeper Joe Western, leaving Wood with the simplest of finishes.

Star started to play some decent football with midfielders James Chadwick and Daniel Lumb prominent but Bridge fullbacks Dean Park and Lee Albon plus centre halves Ricky Taylor and Danny Cook kept Star at bay.

Hirst fired straight at the keeper with the goal at his mercy early in the second half and Star gained the upper hand.

They equalised with a Chadwick header and substitute Ryan Thomas made a clever run into the box and squared for Danny Willars to finish.

Bridge drew level with 15 minutes left when James Yates’s long throw enabled Cook to curl the ball past the stranded keeper.

Cook’s shocking attempted pass was picked off by Thomas for 3-2 but with five minutes left Yates’s wicked delivery from a free kick resulted in Wood firing home from the edge of the area.

Third-placed Denholme United were beaten 7-5 at home by a Salem side they had flattened 6-0 earlier in the season.

Speedy strikers had a field day with Matty Horsfall and Nick Green bagging hat-tricks for Salem and Michael Midgley doing the same for the hosts.

Salem twice took the lead in the first half but were pegged back on each occasion, Joe Greenwood and Midgley hitting the target for Denholme.

Midfielder Tom Neville was Salem’s other scorer and he provided several telling passes as Salem took a 4-2 lead and extended it to 7-4 before Midgley had the final word, fullback Greenwood having earlier scored his second for Denholme.

Volunteer Arms beat fellow mid-table side Northowram 4-3 on Savile Park, leading for much of the contest.

Arms went 2-0 up against the slow-starting visitors and although James Waggett pulled one back from the spot, the hosts got a third.

Adam Ingham’s wonder strike reduced the deficit before half time but Volunteer scored from a set piece to make it 4-2. It was mostly Northowram from then on but their only reward came when Chris Conroy beat the ‘keeper at the second attempt with 15 minutes to go.

Wadsworth took to the pitch for the first time since mid-November and received a nice late present to emerge 2-1 winners away to Elland Allstars.

Their second half fightback looked likely to yield a point until an Allstars own goal with almost the last kick of the game at Elland Rec gave them victory.

Allstars took the lead through Shaw just before half time but Wadsworth had the better of the second half and after Johnny Gibson had equalised, it was his cross from the left which resulted in a defending knocking the ball past his advancing keeper.

Halifax Irish Centre had an eye-catching 6-2 win over Stainland at West Vale, veteran striker Steve Galloway getting two of their goals.

Two goals each from Martin Rigby and Dean Fulton kept Sowerby Bridge Reserves flying high in Division Two.

Bridge were 5-0 home winners over their mid-table Greetland counterparts and that maintained their one-point advantage over chasers Warley Rangers Reserves, who won 4-1 away to Sowerby United reserves with two goals apiece from Gary Kikutz and Paul Kendall.

Tom Garland gunned down AFC Crossleys with a hat-trick as his Hebden Royd Red Star Reserves side won 6-3 away to Crossleys and they went third when Elland United Reserves were unable to raise a side at home to Halifax Athletic.

Midgley Reserves were beaten 4-3 at home by Shelf United Reserves.

A Matthew Thompson strike put Midgley ahead but the hosts were reduced to 10 men when Tom Rawnsley handled on the line.

Shelf missed the penalty and goals from Liam Neal and James Bamford helped Midgley into a 3-1 lead with 10 minutes to go.

However, the hosts simply ran out of steam and Shelf stormed through to take the honours.

Volunteers Arms Reserves, the only team to lose to Salem Reserves in Division Three this season, avenged that defeat with a 2-1 win in Saturday’s return.

Volunteer took the lead midway through the first half when ex-Salem striker Louey Kenny’s curling cross was misjudged by home custodian Victor Brown and the ball hit the top corner of the net.

Salem upped the pace with Herbert and Dave Holcroft getting to grips in the middle of the park and full back Mark Atkinson, Simon Gill and Ian Fletcher linking well down the right.

Louis Halstead twice shot over the bar when one on one with Vol keeper Carl West and fluffed a couple more chances in the second half.

Kev Spalding’s speculative shot sneaked in to make it 2-0 but Halstead pulled one back with a mis-hit shot which trickled in.

Salem threw everything at Vol in search of the equaliser but the home side hit the bar twice on the counter-attack and Kenny forced Brown into an excellent save.

Leaders Calder ‘76 Reserves missed a chance to move seven points clear at the top when suffering only a second league defeat of the season, by 4-3, at Savile Arms.

Calder ‘76 moved through to the fourth round of the Halifax FA Saturday Cup, beating visitors Brighouse Town on penalties after the pair had been locked together at 2-2 after extra time.

The hosts were playing their first match since November and it showed in the first half as they went 1-0 down and then conceded again early in the second half.

That setback brought the home side to life and they dominated the rest of the 90 minutes, Gav Fleming got one back in a crowded penalty area and Remi Allen’s sweetly-struck shot made it 2-2, Steve Jones and Richard Topham hitting the woodwork.

The home side were grateful to Warren Clayton for a brilliant near-post save which took the game to extra time and it was stalemate in the added 30 minutes with few chances.

In the shoot-out Ricky Topham scored for Calder and Town’s first penalty taker Greg Porter hit the target in reply. Man of the match Simon Whitton, Stansfield and James Megson all scored for Calder while a Clayton save and an effort over the bar meant it was all over at 4-1.