| Mellor Firsts go top, Thirds win, Seconds
and Fourths beaten
Mellor Firsts scored five for the second week running. But this week's performance was far better and more polished, especially in the second half. The 5-2 home win over near neighbours Govan puts Mellor on top of the Premiership and sets up nicely next week's mouth watering meeting with second placed Whalley Range. Govan started the brighter and a string of errors put the home side under early pressure. The visitors forced a series of free kicks and corners and might have led on five minutes when they caught Mellor's defence napping at a flag kick and hit the post. On eight minutes another corner kick rebounded dangerously off a Mellor defender and keeper Gav Thornley had to go full length to save.
On 12 minutes the ball looped up invitingly for Craig Frisby to volley from 18 yards but his effort sailed wide. On 22 minutes Jono Hunt headed wide from an Adam Barlow free kick. On 24 minutes Lewis Jeffs had to replace Paul Swann who pulled up with a calf strain. But a minute later Mellor took the lead. Barlow's whipped free kick was heading into the top right hand corner when the Govan centre back put his head in the way and deflected the ball into the other side of the net past his own keeper. Shades of Tommy Hutchinson of Manchester City in the 1981 F A Cup Final.
On 30 minutes another Govan free kick fizzed across Mellor's six yard box with nobody able to get a touch. Five minutes later Barlow released Jeffs who shot wide when a cross to the waiting Craig Frisby might have been the better option.
A minute later Frisby set up Dave Moss whose long range effort went just too high. Govan still looked dangerous and on 38 minutes Thornley had to save with his foot. The reprieve was short lived and on 41 minutes Mellor's defence allowed a Govan forward a free header from close range following a corner and he didn't pass up the chance for 1-1. In first half injury time Adam Barlow jinked past three defenders and slid the ball across the six yard box but with no colleague in range.
Mellor started the second period more purposefully. On 50 minutes a fierce Dave Moss drive was parried by Govan's keeper but Luke Jubb retrieved the ball from the byline, held off a defender and crossed for Frisby to slide home from four yards. Two minutes later another Frisby effort was deflected for a corner. A surging run by Mark Oldham ended with a dangerous cross which eluded teammates. But on 65 minutes Frisby controlled a long pass well and slipped in Jack Hilton who kept his nerve and side footed home for 3-1. Four minutes later Hilton was tackled from behind in the area and referee Graham Ellis awarded a penalty which Frisby duly stroked home, sending the keeper the wrong way.
Terry Boon replaced Jubb and Jack Parr came on for Barlow. On 77 minutes Hilton harried Govan defender Jack Norbury into an error and rolled the ball in for 5-1. But soon after Mellor keeper Thornley gifted a similar goal to Govan. There was just time for Lewis Jeffs to send in a dangerous cross which Jack Parr just failed to reach. Dave Moss then drove over the bar and in the final minute Moss almost set Mark Oldham clear with a dinked free kick but the defender could not take the ball in his stride.
The Seconds went to unbeaten and table topping Bedians and lost 1-3. Bedians took the lead in the second half. Ryan Yates equalised but the home side scored twice more to clinch the points.
The Thirds went second in Division C after a 4-2 win at Old Strets. Sam Parker scored two, Ian Arnfield and Andy Given got the others. Sam Healey was Man of the Match. But if the league this week confirms a 1-0 win earlier in the campaign when Droylsden failed to field a team Mellor will go top by two points.
The Fourths lost 2-7 at home to Irlam Steel. Chris Culkin scored both goals.
Govan's centre back deflects Adam Barlow's free kick past his own keeper
Dave Moss shoots from distance
Jack Hilton scores coolly
Craig Frisby wraps up the win with a penalty