Old Boys end 26 years of hurt

Nicholas Breakspear see off Jack to win Premier Division title

Premier Division

NICHOLAS Breakspear Old Boys clinched the Premier Division title following their 2-1 win over bottom side Blackberry Jack on Sunday.

It’s the first time Breakspear have won the Premier title since season 1985-86 when they picked up the championship for the fifth time. Both sides were full of confidence – Jacks with a full squad were out to pick up their first win of the season, and Breakspear for an easy ride to win the title.

Jacks set their stall out from the beginning with many players behind the ball and relying on quick breaks. Breakspear had most of the possession, trying to set up leading marksman Dave Parkinson who was a constant thorn in the Jack defence.

The opening goal came when Breakspear’s Man of the Match Sam Clark volleyed home superbly to ease Breakspear’s nerves. Jack relied on quick breaks and one led to a brilliant save from Marc Cavaciuti in Breakspear’s goal.

After half-time Breakspear increased their lead straight from the kick-off with a smart move finished with Sam Clark finding the net.

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Breakspear were now in control and only the brilliance of Russ Garland in the Jack goal kept his side in the game, saves which included three one-on-ones when Breakspear looked certain to increase their lead.

Breakspear were shocked when a Jack break saw them superbly pull a goal back. But there was not to be any shock result as Breakspear regained control although unable to score, mainly through the brilliance of Garland in the Jack goal.

Division Three

WITH keeper Karl Neal playing up front, Nicholas Breakspear OB Res enjoyed a comfortable 4-2 win over Marquis of Granby.

Neal opened the scoring, before Liam McGarry bagged a brace. A Paddy Leonard wonder chip from 25 yards completed Breakspear’s scoring. Marquis goals came from Nick Smith and Ross Dempsey.

St Albans IFC started well and took a deserved lead through Jason Nicolaou against Wheathampstead ‘89 who are still battling for a mid-table finish. Defensive lapses saw Wheathampstead back into the game to lead 3-1.

The second half saw IFC again start the stronger, with well worked goals from Mario Concialdi and Man of the Match Spencer Clarke-Mardel levelled the scores before Wheathampstead hit a late winner.

Wheathampstead’s goals came from top marksman Lee Bennet (two), to bring his tally to 28, Craig Linney and Steve Horsfield.

Skew Bridge Res took a three-point lead at the top of the division with a fine 5-0 win against AFC Crown. With three games left, only Golden Lion are in a position to catch the Bridge, but four more points will give Bridge the title. Ben Dawes scored his second hat-trick of the season. Steven Harris and Adam Facer completed Skew’s tally.

Division Four

A DETERMINED Harpenden Colts OB Res team refused to be intimidated by a White Horse team looking to record the double against them.

Man of the Match Steven Stratford held a cohesive defence together and many enterprising attacking moves culminated from the back four threading through incisive passes.

Robbie Barker scored the opening speculative goal from 30 yards having seen the keeper off his line, and although White Horse equalised through a lapse in concentration the second half proved decisive as Lewis Paul and Steve Easterbrook extended Colts goal count for a 3-1 victory.

Herts Mauritian FC had a good day at the office with a 7-2 win against Brookmans Park A, dominating the game from the outset.

Mauritian showed why they had dominated the fourth division this season. Park’s goals came from Trevor Smith and Dominic Woolard.

Division Five

SANDRIDGE left it late against Raiders United to grab what could be a vital point in their promotion charge.

The eventual equaliser came from their top marksman Robbie Pullman.

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LEAGUE-LEADERS O’Neill Celtic picked up their ninth point with a 3-1 win against Shire Horse. Joe Geddes (two) and Graham Mosdall scored Celtic’s goals.

Greenwood Park keeper Carl Webb put in a Man of the Match performance when his side fell to a 4-0 defeat against Oaks Res.