The final Saturday of March saw a mixed bag of results for East Devon teams playing in steps five, six and seven, writes Stephen Birley.
Exmouth Town had to settle for a point after their match visit to fellow Toolstation Western League Premier Division (step five) title hopefuls Mousehole, but there was a South West Peninsula League Premier East (step six) clean sheet win for Axminster Town while, at the same level, Sidmouth Town went down to a heavy defeat against top-of-the-table Okehampton and Honiton Town drew their home meeting with Cullompton Rangers.
In the Scott Richards Solicitors Devon League (step seven). Jordan Ewing scored a brace as Topsham Town triumphed over Alphington 5-0.
Exmouth Town played before yet another 300-plus crowd, this time it was at Cornish side Mousehole where Town – who had more than 60 of their own supporters at the game – shared the spoils in a 0-0 draw. This allowed Tavistock to regain the top spot in the Western League Premier Division after they won 1-0 at Brislington.
Heading into the closing weeks of the league campaign Town sits second with 61 points with six games remaining. Mousehole occupy third spot and also sport 61 points, though they have seven games remaining and Tavistock are two points clear with 63 points and they, like Mousehole, have seven games remaining.
It looks set to be a really close battle for the top two places and, this coming weekend, the matches involving the top three are: Tavistock versus Saltash United, who sit fifth with 56 points from 30 games – this match is being played on Friday night and then, on Saturday (April 2), Exmouth Town are again in action in Cornwall with a visit to sixth placed Helston (52 points from 30 games) and Mousehole, who visit Helston Athletic on Wednesday night (March 30), then host Bitton on Saturday.
Axminster Town, who spent a dozen games looking for a success, now have back-to-back South West Peninsula League Premier East wins after a 1-0 success at Bovey Tracey. Just as he had done seven days before when the Tigers won 1-0 at Newton Abbot Spurs, Oscar Lattas scored the only goal of the game to see Dan Prettejohn and his men to another handy three points.
Indeed, it is only the fourth time this season that Axminster Town have recorded back-to-back clean sheets and they have a chance to make it three – for the first time this term – when they entertain Brixham on Wednesday night.
The Tigers face a third successive Saturday on the road when, this weekend, they visit Torridgeside.
Harry Leisk scored the second half goal that gave Honiton Town a share of the spoils in a well contested 1-1 draw with Cullompton Rangers. This Saturday (April 2), Honiton Town entertain Crediton United.
Sidmouth Town at Manstone Lane against the Vikings were beaten 4-0 by table-topping Okehampton Argyle.
There’s no game for Town this coming Saturday; the Vikings are next in action when they travel to Crediton United on Tuesday, April 5.
Ottery St Mary did not have a Saturday game, though they did play last Wednesday night when they were beaten 8-0 at home by Dartmouth United –This coming Saturday (April 2), Ottery entertain Ivybridge Town when they will be hoping to find a first goal in almost 18 weeks of action.
The last time an Ottery goal was scored in the SWP League, Premier East was back on December 4, when Danny Pym scored in the 48th minute of Washbrook Meadow meeting with Holsworthy.
In the Scott Richards Solicitors Devon League, as well as the two goals from Jordan Ewings, Topsham Town also had goals from Harvey Docherty, Marcus Howe and Kieran Knight as they defeated Alphington 5-0. The result means that the Tops will now finish third in the final table.
They do have one more game left to complete their league campaign – that an April 9, away game at North Molton Sports Club.
There’s no game this coming Saturday for Topsham Town, but they are in action this Wednesday night (March 30) when they travel to Budleigh Salterton for a cup tie that has a 7.30pm start time at Greenway Lane.