A couple of United Counties Premier Division title contenders fell off the pace as the pressure increased on the chasing pack today (March 24).
Fourth-paced Deeping Rangers were surprisingly held to a 1-1 home draw by lowly Oadby, while fifth-placed Holbeach United suffered a second straight loss, 3-1 at Desborough.
Deeping, who needed a last-gasp headed goal from Scott Mooney to rescue a point, are now 11 points behind leaders Yaxley albeit with four games in hand. Holbeach are a point further back having played a game more and now look out of the race.
There were no such problems for Yaxley or second-placed Wisbech Town, although both had to work hard before securing home wins.
Second-half goals from Phil Stebbing and Dan Cotton clinched a 2-0 win for the Cuckoos over Rothwell Corinthians, while the Fenmen required three goals in the final 22 minutes to overcome Harborough Town at the Fenland Stadium. The visitors led at the break and would have been 2-0 up but for a brilliant save from Paul Bastock.
Michael Frew eventually drew Wisbech level before Billy Smith struck twice. Wisbech remain six points adrift, but have three games in hand.
For the second successive match Peterborough Northern Star felt they were unlucky losers after going down to a 75th-minute goal following a long throw at Daventry. Under 18 goalkeeper Connor Barker delivered an assured display for Star.
In Division One Pinchbeck United’s lead has been trimmed to eight points after their scheduled opponents Thrapston Town cried off after failing to raise a side. Pinchbeck also have two games in hand.
Blackstones remain fourth after a crazy 4-4 draw at Rushden & Higham.
The home side led 2-0 early on, but then had a man sent off. Stones pulled it back to 2-2, fell behind 3-2 and then went ahead 4-3 before conceding a late equaliser.
Bourne’s steady climb up the table continued with an excellent 5-1 win over Irchester at the Abbey Lawns. Dan Schiavi scored twice with Zak Munton, Jacob Smitheringale and Adam Rothery also on target as Bourne crept up to eighth.
March Town United are also making steady progress under new manager Brett Whaley. It’s four games unbeaten under the new boss following a 1-0 win at Leiston Reserves. Rob Conyard the goal which moved March up to 13th.
Wisbech St Mary are 19th after losing a humdinger of a game 5-3 at second-placed Whitton United.
Saturday, March 24
UNITED COUNTIES LEAGUE
Premier Division: Daventry Town 1, Peterborough Northern Star 0; Deeping Rangers 1 (Mooney), Oadby 1; Desborough 3, Holbeach United 1 (Leckie); Wisbech Town 3 (Smith 2, Frew), Harborough Town 1; Yaxley 2 (Stebbing, Cotton), Rothwell Corinthians 0.
Division One: Bourne Town 5 (Schiavi 2, Munton, Smitheringale, Rothery), Irchester United 1; Huntingdon Town 1, Burton Park Wanderers 2; Rushden and Higham United 4, Blackstones 4.
Postponed: Thrapston Town v Pinchbeck United.
EASTERN COUNTIES LEAGUE
Division One: Leiston Res 0, March Town United 1 (Conyard); Whitton United 5, Wisbech St Mary 3.