Second division leaders Trafalgar Reserves edged closer to the title with a 4-3 win at home to rivals Whitby Wanderers, while second-placed Commercial were forced to work hard for a 2-2 home draw with Ayton and Newlands Reserves went third after winning 6-4 at Tennyson Reserves.
Scarborough News Sunday League
Trafalgar Reserves 4 (J Pinder 4) Whitby Wanderers 3 (D Wilson 2, J Wilson)
Jack Pinder hit all four goals as Trafalgar Reserves saw off rivals Whitby Wanderers in a seven-goal thriller to edge closer to the second division crown.
But leaders Traf were slow out of the blocks, allowing Wanderers to open the scoring through Dom Wilson from close-range after a goalmouth scramble following a free-kick.
Jack Pinder, playing up front with his older brother Rob, levelled the scores with a mis-hit shot that wrong-footed the Whitby keeper, and he struck again before half-time to put Traf in front.
Hot-shot Jack Pinder completed his hat-trick after the break, but Wanderers man of the match Dom Wilson fired in his second to keep Whitby in the game, but once again Jack Pinder pounced to seal the win, although Jack Wilson’s 87th-minute strike gave Traf some nervy moments as the visitors piled forward looking for a leveller to keep their faint title hopes afloat.
Joint player-manager Andy Noon said: “Right-back Chris Bowman was man of the match as he won everything, although obviously Jack played well, I think linking up with his older brother up front seemed to pay off.
“If we win our next game against West Pier Reserves I think - barring some heavy defeats for us and some large wins for our rivals - we will have just about wrapped the title up.”
Commercial 2 (Bayes, Matla) Ayton 2 (Craven 2)
Commercial’s promotion hopes were dented by a 2-2 home draw with Ayton, although it could have been a lot worse for the second-placed side as they trailed 2-0 at half-time.
Ayton opened the scoring after 20 minutes as Tyson Stubbings played a short corner with Kieran Friett, Stubbings then whipped it in to Mark Craven who bullet-headed it in from inside the six-yard box.
Ten minutes later, Craven made it 2-0 as he capitalised on a long kick from stand-in keeper Dan Bywater which was missed in Commercial defence. Craven ran on and lobbed the keeper.
The turning point in the game came soon afterwards. Ayton boss Mark Plumpton said: “Stubbings flicked it over their centre-back’s head and lobbed the keeper. The ball rolled down the net and out the back of the goal, but the ref thought it had gone over and gave a goal-kick. It was a goal and all their lads admitted it was.”
After this reprieve, and a stern team-talk from boss Geoff Osguthorpe, Commercial, with the wind at their backs, dominated the second half.
The hosts pulled a goal back through Joe Bayes’ header from a Macaulay Youngson corner.
Commercial then created numerous chances but nothing clear-cut and put the pressure on the visitors, with Ayton hitting only threatening occasionally on the break.
Finally Matt Matla scored a screamer from 35 yards to level matters with 10 minutes to go. The hosts pushed forward in search of a winner with subs Rob Ward and Mikey Howes missing opportunities to take the three points.
Osguthorpe said: “I consider these as points dropped which disappoints me but I was pleased with our fightback. Credit must go to Ayton who played some good football and deserved something from the game.
“I thought Jamie Fowler played very well for us today.”
Castle 1 West Pier Reserves 5 (Midgley 2, Garton, Bell, Birley)
West Pier Reserves kept their slim title ambitions alive with a fine 5-1 win at Castle.
Pier were on the front foot straight from kick-off, but it took them until the 25th minute to go ahead when, after a string of corners, Rich Garton finally got his head on one to make it 1-0 ,which makes it three in three games for the defender.
Castle started to push and levelled 10 minutes before half-time with a fine header.
Pier regained the lead through stalwart Nick Bell’s close-range tap-in after a goalmouth scramble. Five minutes later Chris Weetman played a short corner to Luke Midgley, who took on three defenders and slotted home at the near post.
Castle won a penalty which had to be re-taken, the second effort was saved by keeper Steve Malone.
Ten minutes from time another corner fell to Danny Birley, who smashed it into the top corner from the edge of the box.
Five minutes later, Birley turned provider, playing a short corner to star man Midgley, who brought the ball down and curled home from 25 yards to make it 5-1.
Tennyson Reserves 4 (Anderson, Malcolm, Allen) Newlands Reserves 6 (O’Flanagan 4, Deyes, Smith)
Sam O’Flanagan signed off in style with four goals as Newlands Reserves roared back from 3-1 down to win 6-4 at Tennyson Reserves.
The striker, who is moving to Blackburn for work reasons, put the visitors 1-0 ahead at the break against a strong home side.
Mikey Anderson’s double and a Cam Malcolm strike early in the second half saw Tennyson take control, and it looked like O’Flanagan’s finale was about to be spoiled, but the striker struck twice to complete his hat-trick and make it 3-3.
Teenager Jamie Deyes put the away side ahead against, but sub George Allen looked to have earned the hosts a point until later efforts from O’Flanagan and Will Smith sealed the win.
O’Flanagan was the man of the match for Newlands, closely followed by his strike partner Aidan Cooper.
Angel 6 (C Rose 3, Foley 2, Jones) Fylingdales Reserves 0
A Curtis Rose hat-trick fired Angel to a 6-0 win against Fylingdales Reserves to keep the home side’s promotion hopes alive.
Josh Foley also banged in two for Bob Farline’s team, Luke Jones scoring the sixth and final goal for Angel, who turned on the style in the second half after edging a close first half 1-0.
Rose was named as man of the match fro the victors.
Alma 1 (Clothier) Heslerton 5 (Webster, Beach, Harrison, R Preston, Schofield)
Heslerton finished their league campaign with a convincing win, although they had to come back from 1-0 down to earn a 5-1 success.
Alma took the lead after 10 minutes when player-boss Phil Clothier beat the offside trap, but central midfielder Mike Webster levelled with a superb overhead kick from seven yards.
The villagers then took control in the second half with Josh Beach’s neat 20 yard-effort, followed by goals from Tom Harrison, Robbie Preston and sub Nick Schofield.
Heslerton boss Dean Storry said: “I’m delighted to end the season with such a big win and decent performance, men of the match were captain Ross Flinton and Mikey Webster.”
Alma chief Clothier said: “We tired in the last 10 minutes when they scored the last two but overall I’m pleased with the performance of our lads today and in recent weeks. They know every game will be difficult but they put everything into their performance so I can’t ask for anything more from them. Our man of the match was Grant Dexter who was strong in defence.”