Ryburn are new AFL leaders

Actions from Greetland v Hebden Royd RS, at Greetland Goldfields. Pictured is James Rawlinson scores for Red Star
Actions from Greetland v Hebden Royd RS, at Greetland Goldfields. Pictured is James Rawlinson scores for Red Star

Ryburn United moved to the top of the Haslem Sheppard Halifax AFL with a hard earned 4-1 win at Sowerby United.

Ryburn started strongly and put Sowerby under pressure mainly through Ashton Richardson’s long throws.

The hosts, for whom skipper Dan Crosland was outstanding, stood up well to the early assault and went in front with their first attack.

Good work by Liam Senior found Corey Henderson, who got past two defenders to finish well.

Ryburn, despite a lot of possession, weren’t really troubling Sowerby but they finally penetrated the home defence and Simon Carter nipped in to head home.

Ryburn rocked Sowerby with two goals in the first five minutes of the second half; a great strike from Joe Swallow and substitute Brad Waddington’s finish.

Ryburn looked likely to run away with it but Sowerby dug in and started to pose Ryburn a few problems. However, the hosts were dealt a cruel blow when Waddington wrapped up the scoring with his second.

Hebden Royd Red Star blew their chance to climb to the summit when they let a three-goal interval lead slip away to Greetland and drew 3-3.

Lewis Cockroft, in a rich vein of form, gave Star an early lead and James Rawlinson headed a second from a corner before going off injured.

When Cockroft added a third before half time the visitors were looking good and playing well.

However, Greetland got one back early in the second half and when experienced Karl Jowett went half the length of the field and beat ‘keeper Joe Kidder at the second attempt, the home side were right back in it.

They equalised with around 10 minutes left, Chris Green and George Bainbridge being the other Greetland scorers.

In spite of their point, Greetland were overtaken by champions Calder ‘76, who beat bottom club Copley United 5-1.

Remi Allen scored a hat-trick, supplemented by goals from Steve Jones and Ben Oldfield. Sam Burrell got Copley’s consolation.

One game in Division One and two in Division Two were postponed due to waterlogged pitches.

Sowerby Bridge continued their winning ways in the middle section, two goals from Sam Hiley helping them to a 3-0 win over Greetland Reserves at Savile Park.

There were 2-1 away wins for fourth-placed Holmfield and third-placed Brighouse Sports at Denholme United and Salem respectively.

Andrew Brunnings two goals helped AFC Crossleys edge out visitors Calder ‘76 Reserves 4-3, Simon Reekie having a similar return for the visitors.

Honours were even at Ripponden Wood bottom where Ryburn United Reserves and Elland Allstars shared eight goals.

St Columba’s grabbed a dramatic late winner to take all three points at home to Sowerby Bridge Reserves in Division Two.

It was 1-1 when Kutubo Touray’s inswinging corner found the back of the net with five minutes remaining.

Earlier Touray had given Saints the lead. Ryan O’Neill intercepted a pass and sent Vinny O’Shea down the channel, O’Shea carried the ball into the box and squared for Touray to finish.

Saints always looked dangerous going forward but Bridge battled hard. They had a great chance to equalise from the spot but Maccauley Richardson got a finger tip on the penalty and it went inches wide.

The second half continued to be keenly contested. A low drive from O’Neill struck the outside of the post, but Bridge were rewarded for their tenacity with 15 minutes left, only for Touray to have the decisive say.

Leaders Ivy House were run closer than expected by Northowram Reserves, winning by the odd goal in nine.

There were handsome wins for Plummet Line (5-1 at home to AFC Crossleys Reserves) and Sowerby United Reserves (8-3 away to Hebden Royd Red Star Reserves).

Clinical finishing proved the difference as Illingworth St Mary’s beat Warley Rangers 3-1 to reach the quarter finals of the Challenge Cup.

The first half hour was tightly contested, neither side giving an inch in a physical battle that referee Wayne Cotton did well not to allow to boil over.

The quality of Illingworth captain Phil Livesy’s whipped free kick allowed his side to take the lead. It was met by the head of 16-year-old Tom McGregor and deftly flicked in to the bottom corner.

Rangers conceded a second minutes later as Illingworth pressed them into a mistake and sprung forward in devastating fashion with Gareth Gaukroger volleying in from close range.

The striker should have put the tie to bed just before the break but missed with the goal at this mercy.

A change in formation at half time shifted the momentum as Warley dominated much of the second period but missed several glorious opportunities.

Connor Bell headed wide from two yards out from Brandon Gilling’s fine cross and Adam Goldthorpe went for glory from an acute angle but found the side netting with two unmarked players waiting for a tap in.

Warley got back into the match when a long range effort from their star player Anthony Campbell sneaking into the bottom corner on the hour mark.

Makeshift striker Goldthorpe headed wide when it seemed harder to miss.

Michael Hickinbotham made two superb saves to keep out Damien Randall but the Warley ‘keeper could do nothing as Livesy rifled the ball into the top corner.