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Saturday's local football round-up: Stowmarket Town claim league record, Thetford Town off the mark, high five for Felixstowe & Walton United but first defeat for Bury Town




Off the back of knocking out higher-league Nuneaton Borough in the Emirates FA Cup on Tuesday, Bury Town had still been fighting on all four fronts this term.

But that is now down to three after equivalent level Loughborough Dynamo broke the deadlock a minute from time in the east Midlands to knock them out of the Buildbase FA Trophy.

The Blues had reported looked below-par in a goalless first half but were improved in the second and the travelling band of supporters believed they were set for a penalty shootout before suffering late heartbreak.

George Bugg on the attack for Stowmarket Town in their home match with Stanway Rovers - which saw them lay claim to a Thurlow Nunn League unbeaten recordPicture: Mark Westley
George Bugg on the attack for Stowmarket Town in their home match with Stanway Rovers - which saw them lay claim to a Thurlow Nunn League unbeaten recordPicture: Mark Westley

A late long throw-in from the Northern Premier League Division One South East side caused late panic in the Suffolk side's penalty box and Joe Rose made two saves before a rebound was poked into his net by Alex Steadman in the 89th minute.

It was a first taste of defeat for Ben Chenery's side this season, having won all seven of their outings in 2020/21, not including the yet-to-be-decided abandoned clash with Witham Town.

A glut of second-half goals at The Goldstar Ground ensured Felixstowe & Walton United comfortably booked their place in the third qualifying round.

Hadleigh United players celebrate Kyle Cassell's stunning opener at Walsham-le-WillowsPicture: Mark Westley
Hadleigh United players celebrate Kyle Cassell's stunning opener at Walsham-le-WillowsPicture: Mark Westley

It had been 0-0 at half-time against fellow Step 4 side with few meaningful chances having been created for either side.

But two goals for defender Sam Nunn and one each for Ollie Canfer, Stuart Ainsley and Callum Bennett left The Seasiders celebrating a 5-0 victory which sees them pick up £3,000 in prize money and leaves them six wins from a Wembley final. The visitors had suffered from losing a player to a red card.

AFC Sudbury - whose home derby with Bury Town scheduled for Wednesday has now been postponed - and Soham Town Rangers were both not in action, following their early Trophy exits.

In the Pitching In Southern League Premier Central, Needham Market remain joint leaders with Coalville Town following a 3-0 home victory against Bromsgrove Sporting – who had started the day just three points behind them in eighth position.

It was 1-0 at half-time with Callum Page striking in the 38th minute before Marcus Garnham saved a penalty from Leon Broadhurst in the dying seconds of the half.

Ben Fowkes struck the post early in the second period before Billy Hunt saw a penalty saved after Kieron Morphew was brought down trying to get to the loose ball.

Youngster Page doubled Needham's advantage with his second goal 10 minutes after the restart, following up a spilled Fowkes shot.

There were good saves at both ends before Hunt took full advantage of a defensive mistake to make it 3-0 in the 69th minute with a powerful finish into the top right-hand corner.

Callum Page scored two goals for Needham Market and was given the man-of-the-match award in their home win against Bromsgrove SportingPicture: Terry Hunter (42743466)
Callum Page scored two goals for Needham Market and was given the man-of-the-match award in their home win against Bromsgrove SportingPicture: Terry Hunter (42743466)

The pleasing result, which comes ahead of carrying a 3-1 aggregate scoreline into the second leg of their delayed Suffolk Premier Cup final at Lowestoft Town on Tuesday, did not see the Marketmen end the day in top spot. They continue to trail Coalville Town, who fired six unanswered goals past a Banbury United side who Bury Town will travel to in the FA Cup next Saturday, on goal difference.

Elsewhere in the division, an 87th volley saw Lowestoft Town denied a victory at ahead of their leg of the county cup final, drawing 1-1 at home to Rushall Olympic. Adan Tann's bundled effort had put them ahead within the opening five minutes.

It sees Jamie Godbold's side drop a place to ninth in the table.

Billy Hunt scores for Needham Market against Bromsgrove SportingPicture: Terry Hunt (42743468)
Billy Hunt scores for Needham Market against Bromsgrove SportingPicture: Terry Hunt (42743468)

Leiston, meanwhile, were unable to take the feelgood factor from their FA Cup run, with Tuesday's penalties victory against AFC Telford setting up a plumb home tie with Barnet next Saturday, into a worrying start to their league campaign.

Joint manager Darren Eadie's side are now propping up the table after their winless start to the season stretched to six matches following a 4-1 reverse at home to Peterborough Sports.

All the goals came within the first hour of the game with the Blues trailing 3-1 at the interval.

Robbie Sweeney battles for the ball in Stowmarket Town's home win against Stanway RoversPicture: Mark Westley
Robbie Sweeney battles for the ball in Stowmarket Town's home win against Stanway RoversPicture: Mark Westley

It was a good day for Stowmarket Town though as another home victory saw them laying claim to setting a new Thurlow Nunn League record for a run of unbeaten matches.

A solitary goal, coming from Josh Mayhew applying the finish to a Seb Dunbar cross on the stroke of half-time, was enough for all three points in a 1-0 win against fellow Premier Division promotion hopefuls Stanway Rovers.

It ensured Rick Andrews' side have avoided defeat in not only the six matches so far this season, but also the 32 played previous, including 28 in the coronavirus-abandoned 2019/20 campaign.

With the Football Association having decided, following recommendations put forward from their member leagues, to null and void the season, it remains to be seen whether the Thurlow Nunn League officials will officially recognise the record.

The three points, Stow's fourth victory from their six matches, moved them up a place to sixth with all but two sides in the division being further ahead with their fixtures falling two successive Covid-19 concern call-offs from their opponents.

Harry French celebrates his goal for Thetford Town at WoodbridgePicture: Sean McKeon
Harry French celebrates his goal for Thetford Town at WoodbridgePicture: Sean McKeon

Ely City (9th) drew for the fourth time in their opening seven matches, picking up a point on the road at Brantham Athletic (8th), with the game finishing 1-1.

Luke Young had pounced on a goalkeeper error to put Ely into a first half lead but Brantham, who had a header cleared off the line drew level through a near post Joss Neale header from a corner.

It ensured Brantham's unbeaten start to the campaign continued, although the balance of chances left the hosts' reflecting on it as two points dropped.

There was late heartbreak for the home supporters at The New Croft as Haverhill Rovers (17th) were caught out pushing for a winner, with Swaffham Town's Oliver Blackman converting deep into stoppage-time for a 2-1 victory.

After last week's big recruitment drive, player-boss Marc Abbott handed debuts to four players with Ryan Weaver, Adrian O'Hara, Tommy Rigby and Ryan Geoghegan all starting.

One of those, former Lakenheath forward, quickly made it a goal-scoring return to the club with a 15th minute header from Abbott's free kick.

But Swaffham grew into the game and equalised with an excellent header following a corner, before stealing all three points with their stoppage time winner in the second half.

Thetford Town players celebrate Max Melanson's goal at Woodbridge TownPicture: Sean McKeon
Thetford Town players celebrate Max Melanson's goal at Woodbridge TownPicture: Sean McKeon

There was also a late winner at Walmer Road where Kirkley & Pakefield prevailed 4-3 to leave Long Melford now bottom of the pile and still searching for their first win this season.

After Melford had an early goal disallowed, the hosts took the lead courtesy of Cameron Russell's fine strike in the 32nd minute.But Melford pulled level three minutes before the interval via a deflection off a defender.

The lead was regained just four minutes into the second half through Dean Conway's shot from the edge of the box.

But Jose Santa's first goal for the club, the Needham Market youngster converting a Jacob Brown pass from inside the area, made it 2-2 in the 70th minute.

The goals kept coming though as Conway's looping shot made it 3-2 to Kirkley before an 85th minute goal from Jacob Brown appearing to be sending The Villagers to just their second point of the term.

Spencer Cawcutt goes up for a header for Diss Town in their home match with King's Lynn Town ReservesPicture: Mark Bullimore
Spencer Cawcutt goes up for a header for Diss Town in their home match with King's Lynn Town ReservesPicture: Mark Bullimore

But within a minute it was 4-3 with Kaiden Goldspink getting what proved to be the winner in a result which moved his side up to third place in the table and four points off the leaders.

Norwich United are the side who remain at the summit as they chalked up their seventh win from eight matches in a 2-1 home victory against previously unbeaten Mildenhall Town (13th).

Their visitors did not make it easy though, with James Hall putting them ahead in the seventh minute before Jordan Forbes brought the hosts level mid-way through the half.

Recent addition James Bemrose in action for Diss Town in their home match with King's Lynn Town ReservesPicture: Mark Bullimore
Recent addition James Bemrose in action for Diss Town in their home match with King's Lynn Town ReservesPicture: Mark Bullimore

Andy Eastaugh's header 56th minute header completed the turnaround while they were unable to stretch their advantage, despiteMildenhall keeper Danny Crump sent off with a straight red card in the 72nd minute.

Breathing down the leaders' necks are Wroxham, who are the only side in the division to still have a perfect record following their 4-2 success at Newmarket Town (14th).

The hosting Jockeys had gone into the break level at 1-1 after Dave Cowley drove into the box and coolly finished to reply to Ishu Fatago's early opener. Ross Paterson also hit the post for the Jockeys.

But a crazy second half saw four goals fly in with Matthew Ward putting The Yatchsmen ahead again only for Michael Shinn himself to get his side level, heading home an excellent cross to the far post from youngster Callum Chambers Shaw.

But two late Harley Black goals, in the 83rd and 90th minutes sealed a seventh win from seven matches to ensure they are two points off the leaders with two games in hand.

In the all-Suffolk top six clash at The Morrish Stadium, the points were shared in a 1-1 draw between Walsham-le-Willows and Hadleigh United.

Before the 20 minute mark Kyle Cassell bent a great strike into the top corner from outside the area which ended up seeing Hadleigh go into the break with a 1-0 lead, despite a good response from hosting Walsham.

The Willows' pressure in the second half finally paid off in the 83rd minute with a fine strike from Cameron Nicholls.

Trevor Collins' side pushed forward for a winner but despite two late efforts, including a Ryan Clark shot, coming back off the crossbar, they could not find one.

It sees Walsham end the day seventh while Hadleigh remain fifth.

Walsham-le-Willows' top scorer Kieran Twinn battles for a loose ball in the box against Hadleigh UnitedPicture: Mark Westley
Walsham-le-Willows' top scorer Kieran Twinn battles for a loose ball in the box against Hadleigh UnitedPicture: Mark Westley

At the other end of the table, it was the battle of two winless sides at Notcutts Park where Thetford Town climbed off the bottom with a 2-1 victory over Woodbridge Town.

A second-minute penalty was converted but Harry French broke clear from a long ball in the 28th minute to make it 1-1 at the break.

And Matt Morton's side completed a come-from-behind victory, in what was their first points from six matches, courtesy of Max Melanson's shot-cum-cross in the 71st minute.

In the Buildbase FA Vase, Whitton United overcame lower-league White Ensign 2-1 while in the CNet Training Suffolk Senior Cup, Lakenheath were 2-0 winners at home to Felixstowe & Walton United Reserves with a goal in each half, from Shaun Avis and Ryan Phillips.

In the Thurlow Nunn League First Division North, Ipswich Wanderers had taken top spot on Friday night with goals from new signing Danny Cunningham, from Stowmarket Town, and George Mrozek sealing a 2-0 home win over Lieston Reserves.

But a 3-0 win for Fakenham Town at home toNeedham Market Reserves (13th), to maintain their unbeaten record, saw them go above Wanderers at the summit on goal difference.

Bryn Mullen was on target for Diss TownPicture: Mark Bullimore
Bryn Mullen was on target for Diss TownPicture: Mark Bullimore

Diss Town dropped to 10th place with their second defeat of the season, 3-2 at home to King's Lynn Town Reserves.

Bryn Mullen had drawn The Tangerines level just after the hour mark after they had trailed 1-0 at the interval.

But the visitors struck twice more before Owen French's stoppage time header got Diss to back within a goal.

Framlingham Town boss Liam Abraham had been looking for his side to pick up where they left off following last week's 9-2 victory at AFC Sudbury Reserves, and the Castlemen did just that with a 4-0 success at Downham Town.

Recent addition James Bemrose in action for Diss Town in their home match with King's Lynn Town ReservesPicture: Mark Bullimore
Recent addition James Bemrose in action for Diss Town in their home match with King's Lynn Town ReservesPicture: Mark Bullimore

Joe Berry had put Fram 1-0 up at half-time against the side who had occupied a top six spot at the start of the day.

A great second half performance saw three more added without reply, with two goals coming from Callum Knights and one for Jono Fryatt.

The result propels Abraham's side from 14th to seventh place in the table.

After shipping nine goals last weekend, AFC Sudbury Reserves (11th) recorded a 0-0 draw at Norwich CBS.

Elsewhere, there were defeats for Debenham LC (14th) - 2-1 at high flying March Town United - Cornard United (17th) - 3-0 at Mulbarton Wanderers - and Haverhill Borough (18th) - 1-0 at Sheringham.

Finally, in the Thurlow Nunn League First Division South, Halstead Town lost a seven goal thriller 4-3 at Newbury Forest.

The Humbugs took the lead from a second-minute penalty, converted by Ricky Gardner, despite the keeper getting a hand to it.

But Tyrell Holder drew hosts level just after the half-hour mark and they went into the lead in the 41st minute when Freddie Anderson tucked away a penalty.

Mark McLean's side levelled at 2-2 within a minute when Joe Older robbed the defence of possession before finishing well and took a one-goal advantage into the break when Gardner tucked away a spilled free kick.

But Steven Carnwell struck in the 72nd minute for 3-3 and Justin Courtney left Halstead pointless for their return trip with his 89th minute winner.

The result leaves promotion hopefuls Halstead just four places off the bottom with four points from their five matches, albeit with games in hand on all but one side in the division.