FOOTBALL: Blank week sees Horncastle Town Reserves slip down the table

With second placed Horncastle Town Reserves inactive, three of the top four sides, all in with a chance of lifting the title, were in action in the Lincoln Saturday League '“ and as expected they all came away with victories.

League leaders Cherry Willingham visited fifth placed Ruston Sports who were looking for a first home win since November. Cherry on the other hand were after continuing their impressive and unprecedented winning run of six successive games.

With two goals from Brendan Foster-Matthieson (his 11th of the season) and one from John Otter, they won 3-0 which saw them retain top spot. Whilst losing, Rustons failed to score for the first time this season.

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Third placed Fulbeck Utd visited Railway Inn in search of a league double and to maintain their unbeaten league record. A Callum Clay hat-trick (his ninth goal of the season) and one from Chris Bates (his sixth) helped them to a 4-1 victory. Scoring for Railway was James Smith.

Victory took Fulbeck second, above Horncastle by one point and two behind Cherry.

Also looking to continue their unbeaten league record and climb back into contention for the title were Birchwood United who hosted Retford Town. The visitors had not picked up a league point since October and they had no reward in this game as Birchwood won 3-0 with goals from Liam Uzzell, Danny Kent and Paul Nicholson (his 10th goal of the season).

It was the fourth occasion the city side had kept a clean sheet and the fourth occasion Retford had failed to score. Victory took Birchwood into third position on the same points as Fulbeck, both with an inferior goals difference but with a game in hand over the two sides above them. With Horncastle not playing, they slipped two places to fourth.

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Further down the table, seventh placed Crown and Arrows hosted eight placed Saxilby Athletic in search of their first league double. In fact their 6-1 away victory was their last league win back in September. Saxilby, on the other hand, won their first game of the season in their first match of 2016 when they beat Retford Town.

With a convincing 4-1, win Crown and Arrows achieved their double with a brace from top scorer Danny Bee (his 11th of the season) and one each, with their first for the club, from Leigh Buttery and Tom Allen.

Victory took Crown and Arrows two places up the table to fifth, above Ruston Sports, while Saxilby remain second to bottom.