Wisbech Town were denied victory in the biggest game of the ChromaSports & Trophies United Counties Premier Division season by a 99th minute equaliser yesterday (March 21).
The Fenmen looked set to blast the title race wide open with victory at leaders AFC Rushden & Diamonds, but the home side rescued a point with a header from a corner in the final minute of a bad-tempered match.
Luke Wilson had nodded Wisbech in front from a set-piece in the 11th minute in front of 930 fans at the Dog & Duck - the highest top flight crowd of the season.
Diamonds then became angered by alleged go-slow tactics by Wisbech and arguments raged on the terraces, in the bar after the game and on social media between representatives of both clubs.
Diamonds remain four points clear of Wisbech with just seven matches remaining.
Wisbech will now rue dropping points at Peterborough Northern Star last Tuesday (March 17), especially as the city side were smashed at home by Cogenhoe yesterday. Cogenhoe scored three times in five first-half minutes on the way to a 5-1 spanking. Central defender Luke Hunnings scored Star’s goal.
Star’s former manager Darren Jarvis had a much happier day as his Holbeach United team beat Wellingborough Town 3-1 at Carter’s Park. The visitors led 1-0 with 12 minutes to go, but goals from Jamie Clarke, Andrew Tidswell and a penalty from Matt Warfield turned dthe game on its head.
“I’m a very proud manager tonight,” Jarvis declared. “The lads showed great character.”
The Tigers have moved above Yaxley into fourth place as ‘The Cuckoos’ dream of a club-best Premier Division continues to fade.
Yaxley have never finished in the top three and they won’t this season unless they remember how to score. They fired blanks for the third game in a row yesterday as they were held 0-0 at lowly Desborough, who were keeping their first clean sheet of 2015.
Huntingdon lost 1-0 at home to a third-minute Boston goal to make it 10 matches without a win, while Deeping Rangers lost 4-1 at Newport Pagnell. David Burton-Jones scored their consolation goal.
It was a black day for the Division One promotion hopes of Peterborough Sports who were surprisingly beaten 1-0 at Bugbrooke St Michael. Fortunately for Sports one of their main promotion rivals, Lutterworth, also suffered a shock defeat, but the city side now face a crucial game at Rothwell Corinthians on Tuesday (March 24).
Rothwell won yesterday and are just two points behind Sports in the race for the second promotion slot with three games in hand.
“We’re not crying into our beer yet,” insisted Sports’ chairman Stephen Cooper. “Given Rothewell’s run-in, if we beat them on Tuesday, I’d rather be in our shoes.”
Blackstones lost heavily again yesterday. They were 4-0 down at half-time at Thrapston on the way to a 6-1 defeat. Martin Holyoak scored Stones’ goal in the 88th minute.,
AFC Stamford earned a aprecious, and very commendable point, in their battle to avoid relegation from Evo Stik Northern Premier Division. A bullet header from a corner from Tom Batchelor earned ‘The Daniels’ a 1-1 draw at home to leaders FC United of Manchester in front of a sizable crowd at the Zeeco Stadium. Stamford are now two places and three points above the drop zone.
Spalding United’s play-off hopes in Division One South took a knock as they went down 3-1 at second-placed Newcastle Town. Former Posh striker Matt Nolan had dragged them level just after the break.
Spalding have a huge game at home to leaders Mickleover Sports on Tuesday.
Ash Brand finished off a fine passing move to earn March Town a 1-1 draw at Haverhill Borough in the battle of two top-six sides in Division One of the Thurlow Nunn League.
EVO STIK LEAGUE
Northern Premier Division
Stamford 1 (Batchelor), FC United of Manchester 1
Division One South
Newcastle Town 3, Spalding United 1 (Nolan).
UNITED COUNTIES LEAGUE
AFC Rushden & Diamonds 1, Wisbech Town 1 (Wilson)
Desborough Town 0, Yaxley 0
Holbeach United 3 (Clarke, Tidswell, Warfield) 3, Wellingborough Town 1
Huntingdon Town 0, Boston Town 1
Newport Pagnell 4, Deeping Rangers 1 (Burton-Jones).
Peterborough Northern Star 1 (Hunnings), Cogenhoe United 5.
Bugbrooke St Michael 1, Peterborough Sports 0.
Thrapston Town 6, Blackstones 1 (Holyoak).
THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE
Haverhill Borough 1, March Town 1 (Brand).