Panthers show bite in thriller

Royston Town Colts U-9 3 Melbourn Dynamos Panthers 4 MELBOURN emerged as winners of an exciting match played to a high standard. Royston began brightly and scored in the opening minutes with a good finish inside the post. The first half was well

Royston Town Colts U-9 3 Melbourn Dynamos Panthers 4

MELBOURN emerged as winners of an exciting match played to a high standard.

Royston began brightly and scored in the opening minutes with a good finish inside the post.

The first half was well-contested as Panthers got their passing and movement going, resulting in shots on target by Sam Bedlow and Willem Van de Ven, met by safe hands.

Dynamos' Ross Cockburn saved well to deny Town a second before leaving the field with a hand injury, replaced by Sam Carrington.

Melbourn got a deserved equaliser as Bedlow and Ben Webb linked well to free Charles Johnson, whose clinical finish to the far post gave the keeper no chance.

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The second half started with Panthers' James Rushton launching the ball from his own half, and a high first bounce deceived the keeper, who turned to see the ball enter the goal.

There was no luck involved moments later, as James Fowkes fed Rushton on the left.

His first-time cross picked out George McDermott, who turned the ball in on the half-volley.

The home side pulled one back, but Dynamos won a series of corners leading to James Fowkes forcing the ball home to restore the difference.

The dying minutes saw a well-taken Colts' consolation, but Dynamos' defence held firm.

Ashwell Academicals U-9 A 1 Royston Celtic A 1

THIS was tremendous effort all round with some good defending and strong attacking. Callum Pinner and Eamon Henderson seemed to step up their performance and both had a great game.

The second half saw Celtic come out stronger and there was some excellent teamwork to keep Ashwell from scoring. But the closing minutes of the game saw the best and most exciting action.

Close to the end of the second half, Lorcan George had a near miss at goal. However, the home team pushed on and scored in the last two minutes of the game.

Dejected, Celtic kicked off for the last few minutes but Ashwell had not reckoned on Henderson having a flash of genius and in the last seconds of the game he chipped the ball over the head of the keeper to find the back of the net making the score level.

Ashwell Academicals U-9 0 Royston Celtic B 1

THE B team were equally determined that they would not be overshadowed by Ashwell, and some of the players showed that they have improved vastly over the season.

Charlie Bartlett and Ian Kuenzi both displayed flashes of inspiration, and Kuenzi fully deserved to be wearing the captain's armband.

Matthew Foley also put in a much improved performance, as did Jimi Smith who had not played for a few weeks, but it was the teamwork which again helped to produce a game worth watching.

The first half ended goalless but Celtic came out stronger in the second half, and despite Jack Ison's attempt at goal hitting a post, Charlie Bartlett was moved up from defence and went on to score a brilliant goal.

Keeper Jack Mills made a great save which resulted in a slight injury but he was able to continue keeping the ball out of the net preventing the home team from equalising.

Again, another great result which was well deserved for the amount of effort that was put in.

Melbourn Dynamos Tigers U-8 0 Bishop's Stortford 10

TIGERS were up against a strong Stortford team and were second best for most of the match.

The first half was a stop start affair with both sides suffering injuries to players.

The pressure began to tell on the Tigers defence despite some good interceptions from Andrew Chitty and a couple of decent saves by Oscar Jones in goal. However, they were powerless to stop Stortford racing to a 4-0 half time lead.

Another niggling injury led to Jones being substituted at half-time with Megan Jeray taking his place. Despite a couple of excellent saves in the second half Stortford continued to score at regular intervals adding six more before the final whistle.

The Tigers midfield had a particularly tough time throughout the game, only Seb Bishop made any impact and was named player of the match for the Tigers.

Melbourn Panthers U-8 0 Bishop's Stortford Wanderers 4

THIS was a match where the scoreline did not reflect the true balance of the game.

Both teams battled hard during the first half to take the lead, crunching tackles from Ben Greenaway helped keep the Wanderers at bay.

However after two good saves in the same number of minutes from Melbourn's keeper Ciaran McQuade, the third strike proved too strong to put the visitors one up at half- time.

The second half started as evenly as the first, Kieran Geraghty was unlucky to shoot wide, after good play by George Storey and Luke Eades. Josh Bates, Saffron Henry and Oli Johnson kept it tight at the back, but suddenly the tide turned and the visitors put three chances away to take a 4-0 lead.

Dani Friel spearheaded a number of moves from midfield whilst the Panther's looked for a consolation goal, with Luke Eades having two grabs at scoring in the dying seconds - but it was not to be.