A record league crowd of 4,406 saw EVO-STIK League Southern Division One Central leaders Hereford FC edge out third-placed Evesham United at Edgar Street on Bank Holiday Monday, writes Pitchero's Steve Whitney.
|Mike Symons Scoring Hereford's Second Goal - BN Pic|
The Bulls` relentless march towards the Premier Division was far from comfortable, however, as the visitors, roared on by a healthy following of 340, really gave Peter Beadle`s side a test.
Top scorer John Mills gave the Bulls a 15th minute lead that Mike Symons added to 10 minutes before the break. But it got nervy for the home side after Linden Dovey pulled one back for United 20 minutes from time. The home side held on though to remain thirteen points clear at the top.
Tiverton Town sandwich Hereford and Evesham in second and had a 2-1 Ladysmead win over Devon rivals Barnstaple Town. In front of 341, Jamie Short gave Tivvy a 19th minute lead that Jamie Price added to four minutes later. Barum `won` the second half, courtesy of a Ben Mammola own goal, but the home side held firm.
Salisbury FC are fourth after a good number of Whites` fans travelled to Wimborne Town to see them win 1-0, former Gosport Borough favourite Justin Bennett scored the only goal five minutes from half-time in front of a crowd of 657.
Mangotsfield Town dropped to fifth after a dramatic 3-3 Cossham Street draw with neighbours Bishops Cleeve.
Cleeve shocked their hosts by taking a 2-0 lead with goals from Harlie Price after 25 minutes and Jacob Davidge four minutes into the second half. Ryan Batten eventually pulled the Mangos back into the game on 78 minutes and three minutes later, Liam Monelle equalised.
However, Ben Prothero`s 87th minute effort looked to have won it for Cleeve, who have performed better away than at home this season, only for Lewis Powell to equalise two minutes into stoppage time.
Swindon Supermarine moved to within two points of the top five after an emphatic 5-0 win at bottom side Wantage Town.
It was virtually all over at the break with `Marine three-up with goals from Connor Thompson, Josh Parsons and a Brad Hooper penalty. Callum Parsons added a fourth two minutes after the break and then Hooper`s second spot-kick of the day completed a nap hand in stoppage time.
Taunton Town are three points behind `Marine with games in hand after they won 4-2 at a Bideford side who were just behind them in the table at kick-off.
Taunton got off to a flying start with Jordan Rogers scoring inside 50 seconds and again after three minutes. James Richards pulled a goal back for Bideford in the 35th minute but Owen Irish restored Taunton's two-goal lead in the 37th minute. Ross Staley made it 4-1 on 66 minutes before Richards hit his second of the game in the 82nd minute.
Eighth-placed Shortwood United were held up after a 4-4 home thriller against neighbours Slimbridge.
Marley Thomas and Adam Mace had the visitors` two-up by the 25th minute. A Jake Lee brace on 28 and 33 minutes pulled United level and then Will Morford`s penalty eight minutes after the break put them in front for the first time.
Brad Martin equalised on the hour-mark and Joe Stokes made it 4-3 with 13 minutes to go. But Lee completed his hat-trick to earn Shortwood a point three minutes later.
Second-bottom Bridgwater Town suffered a 5-0 Fairfax Park hammering by fellow strugglers Paulton Rovers.
Joss Ford led the spree with two goals, the others coming from Jordan Ricketts, Reeco Best and Kailan Gould.
A crowd of 360 saw AFC Totton go down 3-1 at Testwood Park to Winchester City, whose Stuart Green bagged a brace and Joe Briggs the other – Nat Sherbourne being the Stags` targetman.
Louis John gave Didcot Town an early fourth minute lead at North Leigh, only for Lance Williams and Jamie Cook to see the home side lead 2-1 at the break. Sam Elkins earned Diddy a point with a 67th minute equaliser.
It also finished all-square in the derby between Larkhall Athletic and Yate Town, whose Jack Camm gave them a 35th minute lead that lasted only seven minutes as Ed Dryden pulled the Larks back on terms.