Greetland hot on cup trail again

Greetland, who lifted the Halifax AFL Challenge Cup in 2009 and 2010, stormed into this season’s semi-finals with a stunning extra time performance away to Holmfield.

They went through 5-1 and are joined by Premier leaders Stump Cross and Division One strugglers Halifax Irish Centre while the Elland United versus Sowerby United last eight game was postponed.

Mark Heppenstall shot narrowly wide early on for Greetland but Holmfield started to dominate possession and took the lead when Matt Oldfield’s attempted clearance rebounded into the Greetland net from a tight angle.

Adam and Matt Oldfield put in some tough tackles on a very heavy pitch and Greetland drew level on the stroke of half time when Mark Hindle’s break and square ball allowed Heppenstall to chip the keeper.

Play became scrappy as the pitch cut up. Carl Ainley’s header was well saved and Heppenstall and Tom Wall both went close while Mick Palethorpe was at the heart of Holmfield’s best play.

There was no addition to the scoreline until extra time when Ainley’s superb free-kick gave Greetland the lead.

Danny Dorward’s chip made it 3-1, Heppenstall scored after quick thinking from Paul Gee and Dorward completed the scoring when he jinked inside two players and hit a 25 yard screamer into the roof of net.

Stump needed extra time at Shroggs Park to finally see off a brave challenge from Calder ‘76, winning 2-1.

Chances were at a premium, Stump having the better of the first 25 minutes before the visitors came more into the contest with Remi Allen blazing an effort over the bar and sub Jon Moynes shooting just wide from the edge of the area.

Matty Hoyle provided Stump’s biggest threat but it was Dean Lewis who came closest to breaking the deadlock for the hosts, keeper Warren Clayton grabbing the ball at the second attempt on his goalline.

Calder thought they might have won it when Matty McCambridge’s free kick from the right ended up in the top corner on 85 minutes but Stump levelled from a Liam Brompton free-kick two minutes later, the unmarked Josh Hiley heading home.

The winner came 10 minutes into extra time, Damian Watkins beating the offside trap and crossing. When Calder only half cleared, Sam Hiley knocked the ball home.

The visitors pushed for an equaliser but were held at bay by a defence in which Lee Marsh was outstanding.

Shelf, bottom of the Premier, looked to have a decent winning opportunity at home to Irish but were beaten 7-5 with Craig Eastwood the four-goal hero for the visitors.

Improving Midgley United reduced Stump Cross’s lead at the top of the Premier to two points with an impressive 4-0 home win over Warley Rangers.

Midgley scored two goals in each half to inflict a first league defeat of the season on draw experts Warley.

The home side dominated for much of the contest with Liam Brook and Jason Cartlidge to the fore in the centre of the park on a very heavy pitch.

The first goal came from a set piece after 15 minutes, Jason Cartlidge claiming it from a header, Calum Rogers ensuring the ball had crossed the line.

Tom Booth doubled the lead 10 minutes later when he turned the centre half and drilled the ball into the top corner of the net.

Steve Butterworth in the home goal was relatively untroubled as the home side pushed on in the second half.

Darren Nelson latched on to an Andrew Butterworth pass and curled the ball into the far corner and Booth completed the scoring with a header from a Greg Spinks cross.

Ryburn United are third after a 4-2 win against Copley in a contest switched to Savile Park.

The visitors played some great football in the first half and went 2-0 up. Andrew Cross applied the finish touch after good work from the outstanding Rob Gerrard, who drilled home the second.

Danny Dewick replied with a sweet volley and Copley came out for the second half with all guns blazing, Jim Murphy levelling from a ball over the top.

However, Ryburn substitute Joe Akroyd scored from close range after Gerrard and Christian Silkstone had done the spadework. Simon Carter missed badly and Gerrard showed him how to finish with the clincher.

Eddie Harvey bagged a hat-trick as Hebden Royd Red Star returned to the top of Division One in the Haslem-Sheppard Halifax AFL with a 6-2 win at home to Salem.

The hosts had to weather an early storm and Glynn Claxton made an excellent reaction save with his legs before Harvey timed his run perfectly to meet Liam Barrett’s floated cross and open the scoring.

Simon Leah’s excellent corner from the left was nodded home by Daniel Lumb at the back post,

On a boggy surface, the game was developing into a real battle but Red Star took a 3-0 interval lead when Charles Marshall won a penalty and Harvey’s spot kick went in off the underside of the bar.

Salem got one back and the deficit was further reduced midway through the second half by a superb free kick.

However, Jordan Dean forced the ball home in a goalmouth scramble and Salem’s centre half was dismissed for a second caution after a late tackle on Chris Garbutt.

Harvey completed his hat-trick at the far post and the scoring was completed in the final moments by Leah after he had intercepted a throw from the ‘keeper on the edge of the box.

A well-organised and hardworking Northowram side proved too strong for third placed Stainland United, two second half goals clinched a deserved 3-1 win.

Chris Conroy was denied by Ryan Severn’s save but opened the scoring from an errant back pass.

A last-ditch tackle from Matthew Rushworth and a good block from keeper James Bunn denied Stainland but the hosts equalised through Andy Peters at the near post following a corner.

Both sides squandered good chances in the second half. Paul Friend missing a couple for Stainland, who also hit the bar.

Archie Griffiths went past two defenders and set up Conroy for a decisive finish to make it 2-1 to the visitors.

The Rams made most of the running in the final 30 minutes and Griffiths put the seal on a fine individual performance as he drifted past an opponent and his shot deceived Severn after taking a slight deflection.

Elland Allstars climbed to fourth with a 2-1 win at Mixenden United while the game between Wadsworth and previous leaders Sowerby Bridge was postponed.

Denholme United are up to third after an astonishing 11-5 home win over 10-man visitors Volunteers Arms.

They were 3-0 up after 18 minutes, 5-1 up at the break and then the goals really flowed in the second half with United playing down the slope on a very heavy pitch.

Neil Roberts and Michael Midgley both bagged four for the Andy Webster/Mick O’Connor-run hosts with Paul Armitage, Matty Waring and Carl Dennett completing the home tally.

Visiting player boss Jason Varley kept Volunteers’ heads above water with a fine individual display. He scored a hat-trick and cut have had more, regularly cutting a swathe through the home ranks.

Only one game went ahead in Division Two and AFC Crossleys Reserves won it, Andy Mellard scoring twice in a 4-3 win away to Halifax Irish Centre Reserves.

Shelf FC scored three times in the first 20 minutes en route to a 4-0 success away to Salem Reserves in Division Three.

They forced home keeper Ian Fletcher into two saves in the first two minutes but midfielder Daniel Phipps made the breakthrough with a shot which deflected in off Sean Neary.

Gary Boldy slid a shot just inside the post and Benjamin Burns finished off a slick move to leave Salem facing a heavy reverse. However, CJ Waddington and Mark Atkinson might have replied as Salem rallied before visiting man of the match Jack Hartley scored.

Calder ‘76 Reserves beat their Midgley United counterparts 3-2 in the Invitation Cup.

They resisted a second half fightback from their derby rivals who had trailed 3-0 at the break to goals from James Dempsey (two) and Callum Wheelwright.