Grogan goal maintain’s Shelf’s fine start

Irish Centre's Martin Galvin and Midgley Reserves'  Matthew Thompson
Irish Centre's Martin Galvin and Midgley Reserves' Matthew Thompson

Shelf United, last year’s Division One runners-up, made it two wins out of two in the top flight with a 1-0 home win over Warley Rangers.

Billy Grogan got the all-important goal with 12 minutes left, his well-placed, curling shot beating the ‘keeper.

Shelf had played really well to sink champions Ryburn United in their opener and this performance wasn’t as good, with boss Steve Goodwin admitting Warley had deserved to take something from the game.

Jordan Burnham ran the midfield for the visitors and Shelf were indebted to solid displays from keeper Danny Gill and defenders James Waggott and Lee Williams.

The other promoted side, Northowram, picked up their first win in the Premier Division for several years when they were 3-2 home winners against Greetland.

A confident Greetland passed the ball with assurance early on but the Rams gradually forced their way into the game and were rewarded when centre back Matthew Rushworth headed home a corner after 30 minutes.

Greetland had hardly threatened after their positive start but equalised on 37 minutes when Tom Wall was first to a flick-on and prodded home.

The direct running of Alex O’Keefe on the right and good touches from Karl Amos on the left caused the visitors problems and it was neat control from Amos that set up Chris Conroy to fire the Rams into the lead before the break.

Greetland made it 2-2 just before the hour when Archie Griffiths was caught in possession and Ellis Dixon sidefooted home.

The winner came 14 minutes from time. Greetland ‘keeper Josh Bailes called as he came out to collect O’Keefe’s free kick but Danny Rushworth was first to the ball and headed into the empty net.

Jonathan Gibson and James Redmond struck in the final quarter as Calder ‘76 got off the mark for the season with a 2-0 derby win at home to Hebden Royd Red Star.

Gibson flicked the ball home in the six-yard box to break the deadlock and the tireless Redmond tapped the ball in at the back post after good play from influential substitute Frank Howell and Ricky Topham.

Gibson and Gav Fleming had earlier been guilty of glaring misses for Calder while replacement Chad Godfrey put a free header wide for Red Star, who generally looked solid and were dangerous from set pieces.

Midgley continue to set the pace with three wins out of three after a 7-2 home win over Copley United.

They dominated but struggled to make their superiority show on the scoresheet until the last 25 minutes, when they added four goals without reply.

Copley took the lead against the run of play with a penalty and that unsettled Midgley but Jason Cartlidge made it 1-1 following a corner, controlling with his chest and firing into the roof of the net.

A superb strike from Rob Stansfield, who sent the ball looping over the ‘keeper from 18 yards into the top corner, and a Toby Standring goal, after he had latched on to Cartlidge’s through ball, made it 3-1 at the break.

Copley got a second against the run of play after ‘keeper Steve Butterworth was unable to cling onto the ball but Standring restored the two-goal gap after going through one-on-one with the keeper.

A Calum Rodgers back post header and a goal from Calum Wheelwright with his first touches put more daylight between the sides and Stansfield completed the scoring with a low, hard drive into the corner from the edge of the box.

Champions Ryburn United got a win on the board at the third attempt, crushing visitors Elland United 6-1 with six different scorers.

Holmfield are the only team in the league to have four wins in the bag.

The free-scoring Division One leaders were given their closest game so far at home to Elland Allstars, coming through 3-2 with a Jason Pettifor hat-trick.

Mixenden had maintained their 100 per cent record on Friday evening with a 4-2 win away to Denholme United, helped by two goals from Ashley Bailey.

West Central put in an early contender for the biggest win of the season, thrashing visitors Denholme United Reserves 13-4 in Division Two.

The speed of their play was too much for the visitors, who nevertheless kept their heads up throughout.

West Central were unbeaten on their 3G pitch last season and made a strong statement with the help of five goals from star striker Terriq Pervez.

There were also hat tricks from Lamin Jennah Jnr and very promising young midfielder Awais Ali Khan.

Mhiran Sajjad and Omar Dar got the other goals and there was good turn out by both teams at West Central’s new base in the Sweet Centre at King Cross.

Shelf United Reserves beat derby rivals Northowram Reserves 5-3 in Division Two, proving fitter and faster in the second half.

Rams had the boost of an early goal, courtesy of Chris Keeling’s glancing header from a long throw-in, but Shelf were quickly on terms when Elliot Parkinson, the home side’s best player, stooped to head home a corner.

Close to half-time Jacob Green’s header from a free kick put Shelf ahead.

Playing down the slope, Shelf had by far the better of the second half but after Ash Drake had hit a post, Brett Abson made it 2-2 after 65 minutes.

However, Danny Marsden headed Shelf back in front and Drake and the unmarked Ross Broadley made it 5-2 before Abson completed the scoring late on.