Saturday's local football round-up: Stowmarket Town and Bury Town involved in high-scoring encounters while Mildenhall Town win all-Suffolk affair and Harleston Town edge derby with Diss Town
Stowmarket Town and Bury Town prepared for this afternoon's Pitching In Isthmian League North Division derby at Greens Meadow by being on different ends of 3-2 scorelines on Saturday.
While Bury – who will be the visitors later today – were celebrating victory by the odd goal in five at home against Hullbridge Sports, Paul Musgrove's Stowmarket went down by the same scoreline during their trip to Maldon & Tiptree.
All of the goals came in the second half at the Denny Bros Stadium, where Bury fell behind before they responded via Olly Hughes, Cemal Ramadan (penalty) and Will Gardner.
Hullbridge's Brad Russell ensured it would be a nervy finish when he pulled a goal back 10 minutes from time, but Ben Chenery's hosts held out to secure a first three points of the new season.
Stowmarket, meanwhile, were involved in a topsy-turvy encounter at Park Drive. Evan Collard put the Old Gold & Blacks in front with 26 minutes on the clock, but within 60 seconds Maldon were level via Scott Kemp.
The Essex-based hosts went in front before the break through Bryan Ifeanyi, but it seemed the visitors were in line for a share of the spoils when summer signing Anthony Spyrou opened his goalscoring account for the club.
But with seven minutes remaining Kemp struck again to sink Stowmarket, who go into the Bury clash having picked up one point from the first six on offer this term.
Elsewhere in the division, new joint managers Rick Andrews (formerly of Stowmarket) and Angelo Harrop continued their positive start to life in the AFC Sudbury dugout by winning 1-0 at Brentwood Town.
Centre-back Joe Grimwood proved to be the match winner with his 43rd-minute goal, meaning that the recently-appointed bosses have started the season with four points from six and progression in the Emirates FA Cup.
Sudbury's goalkeeping coach Danny Potter tweeted after the final whistle: "Very solid performance today against a good team that will be up there at the end of the season."
However, it was not to be for Felixstowe & Walton United as they went down 1-0 from their tough trip to highly-fancied Canvey Island.
The Seasiders had some decent chances – particularly during the first half – but Canvey's Elliott Ronto scored the goal that mattered six minutes into the second half.
Meanwhile, in the Pitching In Northern Premier League Midlands Division, Soham Town Rangers' wait for a victory continued following their 2-0 home defeat at the hands of Shepshed Dynamo.
Up a level in the Pitching In Southern League Premier Central, Lowestoft Town secured their first win of the season, getting the better of Alvechurch 3-2 at Crown Meadow.
Jake Reed was the star of the show for the Trawlerboys as he helped himself to a hat-trick, having also missed a penalty during the first half. The victory was all the more impressive given that Jamie Godbold's team had fallen two goals behind against their opponents, who were reduced to 10 men when the scoreline was goal-less.
There was not such positive outcomes for Needham Market and Leiston though, with the pair suffering 2-0 defeats away from home at Coalville Town and Nuneaton Borough respectively.
Consequently, Kevin Horlock's Needham have now collected just one point from the first 12 on offer in 2021/22, while Leiston have four points to their name from the same amount of fixtures.
In the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division, the all-Suffolk affair between Mildenhall Town and Walsham-le-Willows ended 3-0 in favour of the home team.
First-half goals from Phil Weavers and Ben Nolan put Mildenhall in the ascendancy before Dan Brown completed the scoring shortly after the restart.
The match ended on a concerning note when Mildenhall midfielder Joe Asensi had to be stretchered from the field of play and was taken to hospital with a leg injury. Asensi has since confirmed that there was no break of the bone, but the extent of the damage is not yet known.
Mildenhall are a point and a place below Hadleigh United (5th) after they continued their good start to the campaign with a 1-0 victory at Kirkley & Pakefield.
The only goal of the game at Walmer Road came in the 69th minute courtesy of Sam Sharp, with Mason Ransome the architect.
Luke Mallett, who also manages AFC Sudbury Women, helped himself to two goals during Woodbridge Town's 4-1 home victory at the expense of Lakenheath.
Ryan Keeble and Liam Scopes were also on target for Leon Moore's charges, while Tom Thurlborn had initially drawn the visitors level at one goal apiece.
It marked a second league win of the campaign for Woodbridge, but for Ben Cowling's Lakenheath it is now four defeats in a row in all competitions.
Like Lakenheath, Haverhill Rovers also shipped four goals away from home as they went down 4-2 at division new boys Mulbarton Wanderers.
Marc Abbott's Rovers twice took the lead in Norfolk via Tom Stoker and Josh Lee, but ultimately they headed back to The New Croft empty handed.
In the battle towards the bottom between two sides that were yet to pick up a victory it was Thetford Town that came out on top, winning 2-0 at Long Melford.
First-half goals from Ross Bailey and Elliot Smith got the job done for Matt Morton's men.
Meanwhile, Brantham Athletic and Ely City could not be separated as their match-up ended 1-1.
An own goal put hosting Brantham in front but Harvey Bullinaria struck late on to secure the Robins a first draw of the season.
In the First Division North, recently-promoted Harleston Town's 100 per cent record was put under serious threat at neighbouring Diss Town, who headed into the break one-up thanks to James Bemrose's 10th-minute header.
However, a second-half brace from Nathan Stone turned proceedings in Harleston's favour and ensured they remain top of the table with five wins from five outings.
After losing back-to-back games at the start of the season, Framlingham Town are now unbeaten in their last three fixtures following the weekend's 3-1 home win over UEA.
An own goal had the hosting Castlemen level at the break, with further goals from Alex Ling and Danny Smith in the second half wrapping up the three points.
Also securing maximum points was Needham Market Reserves, who showed their struggling first team how it is done by overcoming Downham Town 4-2 at Bloomfields. Jose Santa De La Paz was the second string's star player with all four goals.
In contrast, Debenham LC's negative run of form continued as they suffered a 2-0 defeat at home against Peterborough North End.
Guy Hayes' men have collected just four points from their first six outings, and have conceded 12 goals during that time.
In the First Division South, Ipswich Wanderers showed no mercy during their trip to AFC Sudbury Reserves.
Former Leiston, Stowmarket, Thetford and Norwich United frontman Matt Blake notched a hat-trick during the 8-1 win at the MEL Group Stadium, where Evan Bolt, Jack Baker, Teon Leggett, Lewis Kincaid and George Mrozek were also on target.
It is now five wins from five for Wanderers, who are four points adrift of table-topping Buckhurst Hill with two games in hand.
At the eighth time of asking Cornard United picked up their first win of the campaign as they got the better of visiting Wormley Rovers 4-1.
Charlie Lindoe bagged a brace alongside goals from George Vallentyne and substitute Oliver Sims.
And there was also a much-needed victory for Halstead Town, who ended their four-game streak without a win courtesy of a 3-1 triumph at Holland FC.
Jake Brown, Calvin Poku and Alfie Cleal all got their names on the scoresheet for the Humbugs, who have moved up to 10th.
But the wait for a first win of 2021/22 goes on for bottom-of-the-table Haverhill Borough after they suffered a 1-0 home defeat to Benfleet.
Borough, who are managed by Peter Betts, have one point from their first six games.
Monday, August 30 (Kick off 3pm unless otherwise stated)
Southern League Premier Central
Leiston v Lowestoft
Isthmian League North Division
AFC Sudbury v Coggeshall Town (follow @russclaydon for updates), Stowmarket Town v Bury Town (follow @liamapicella for updates)
Northern League Midlands Division
Cambridge City v Soham Town Rangers
Tuesday, August 31 (Kick off 7.45pm unless otherwise stated)
Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division
Fakenham Town v Ely City, Kirkley & Pakefield v Walsham-le-Willows, Lakenheath v Norwich United
Thurlow Nunn League First Division South
Halstead Town v Cornard United, Haverhill Borough v Holland FC, Ipswich Wanderers v Wivenhoe Town
Wednesday, September 1 (Kick off 7.45pm unless otherwise stated)
Long Melford v Woodbridge Town