The only semblance of a shock in Saturday’s first round of the Halifax FA Saturday Cup came at Greetland where Elland Allstars put out Brighouse Old Boys.
The Halifax AFL Division One outfit beat their West Yorkshire League visitors 3-1 on penalties after a 1-1 draw.
Old Boys felt they were the better side but were let down by their finishing and frustrated by their hosts’ success in slowing down the game.
Jaydon Armstrong’s header hit the bar for the visitors in the first half and Old Boys’ luck didn’t improve after the break when a Calvin Lee free kick and a Matt Whiteley header also struck the woodwork.
All-stars took the lead with a breakaway goal but a speculative cross cum shot by attacking fullback Dan Addy from just inside the Allstars half floated over the keeper for 1-1.
Allstars were the more accurate in the shoot-out with only Saxon Hargreaves on target for the visitors.
On a nearby pitch, Greetland were 4-1 home winners at home to fellow Premier side Calder ‘76, whose losing run was extended to six games.
Visiting boss Rob Kenworthy, who side were hit by a couple of no-shows, had no complaints about the outcome.
“We were second best from the first minute. They are a good, young side who won the first ball and then the second ball,” he said.
Greetland were 3-0 up at the break and added a fourth early in the second half before Ben Oldfield struck for Calder, making amends for his earlier own goal.
There was another all-Premier clash at Lightcliffe Academy where Shelf United beat Sowerby United 3-0 with the help of a goal at the start of each half.
Billy Grogan’s through ball set up David Chappell for Shelf’s opener after five minutes. The remainder of the first half was even with Sowerby’s Ryan Allen hitting the bar and keepers Ethan Daly (Shelf) and Charlie Holt-Conway making good saves.
Shelf doubled their lead two minutes after the break when Harry Talbot showed good strength in the box and laid the ball off to Grogan, who stroked the ball home.
Chappell sealed victory with his second following Luke O’Brien’s run down the left and cross on 70 minutes.
Shelf missed a couple more chances as they had the better of the second period.
West Riding County Amateur League pair Ryburn United and Ovenden West Riding both made their anticipated progress.
Ryburn won 5-1 at Northowram after an even first half in which a superbly-struck free kick from Josh Baines gave the hosts the lead after 20 minutes playing down the slope.
Christian Silkstone’s neat side-foot volley from a corner made it 1-1 after 34 minutes.
Long throws continued to cause Northowram problems and George Turner’s back header gave Ryburn the lead as the visitors had by far the better of the second half.
Silkstone’s glancing header trickled in at the far post; a perfectly-struck left foot rising drive from Cameron Tyer found the top corner; and Brad Waddington’s flicked header from another long throw completed the scoring.
Ovenden West Riding had an unconvincing 4-2 victory over Salem at Shroggs Park.
They looked a pale shadow of the team that has lifted this trophy many times in spite of going two goals up in eight minutes, Craig Gladwin and Luke Oldridge scoring from close range,
Benny Bower, Gladwin and Oldridge all missed glaring chances and defensive mistakes by Luke Simmonds and Tom Boyle allowed Jay Thomas to level the scores before the break,
Riding re-asserted themselves and Andrew Mellad’s two excellent finishes earned them a place in round two.
A couple of ties between Halifax AFL Division One sides went the way of the higher-placed sides.
Leaders Illingworth St Mary’s were made to work hard for a 3-1 home victory over Brighouse Sports. They dominated possession but created few chances.
It took a penalty from Jordan Wadsworth to break the deadlock, after the lively Joe Griffen was brought down in the box.
Griffen made it 2-0 with a fine finish before Brighouse struck back just before the break when Connor Durkin broke clear down the left and finished well.
It wasn’t until the last five minutes that substitute Gareth Gaukroger made the game safe with a simple finish.
Second-placed St Columba’s won 7-2 away to Holmfield in spite of falling behind to an early goal.
Frank Odion and Andy Sandells replied as Saints turned the game around before half time.
Odion went on to complete a hat-trick with two further goals and Scott Holmes, George Cook and Ryan O’Neill also got on the scoresheet in a dominant Saints display.
There were thumping home wins for AFL champions Shelf FC, Hebden Royd Red Star and AFC Crossley’s.
Shelf beat Warley Rangers, who prop up the league, by 12-0 with five goals from Callum Lewis and two each from Alex O’Keefe and substitute Bradley Osbourne.
Red Star, third in the Premier, beat division-lower Sun Inn Rastrick 8-0 and Division Two leaders AFC Crossley’s romped past Division Three outfit Flying Dutchman 7-1 with doubles for Connor Atkinson and Tom McGregor.
Reports of a 4-1 win for Mixenden United away to Ealandians proved inaccurate - it was the holders who came out on top.