Sunday League: Defending champions are urged to improve quality
CHAMPIONS Birds Eye Pelham must improve if they are to repeat last season's league and cup double, warns club secretary Steve Booth.
Pelham face Grimsby, Cleethorpes & District Sunday Football League Division One rivals Cromwell this weekend looking to continue their winning start to the season.
They kicked-off their Senior Challenge Cup campaign last Sunday with a 5-1 victory against Division Four outfit Cromwell Rovers.
But Booth insists that Pelham's season won't be a stroll in the park judging by their performances so far.
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He said: "We have not got a settled side yet – but we are close to it – in what could be a tough season.
"Some of the football we've played so far has not been good to watch after what we have been used to, and we must look to improve.
"We must remain focused in all competitions.
"We must not take Cromwell lightly.
"They have beaten Bradley and drawn with Humberston – they will be a tough nut to crack."
Gary Nimmo netted a hat-trick as Pelham – previously Birds Eye Athletic – got their Challenge Cup defence up and running.
Lee Romaniw and Sam Ayres also scored for Pelham. Richard Sparrow netted for Rovers.
Booth added: "Cromwell Rovers knew they were up against it, but all credit to them – they battled away.
"We are a bit rusty, having not played many games but we were good enough to win comfortably."
Meanwhile, Humberston came through a tough cup tie against Division Two side Pattesons to keep their unbeaten record intact, winning 5-3.
Pattesons drew first blood when a punt over the top was misjudged by keeper James Swann and Nathan Crooks walked the ball into an empty net.
But neat passing from Freddy Cass and Liam Davis led to Paul Smith stroking home the equaliser, and three minutes later Humberston took the lead when Louis Grant scored a penalty after being upended in the box.
Cass blasted into the top corner from 30 yards to extend Humberston's lead before half-time.
But Pattesons rallied after the break, levelling the tie through quick-fire goals from Crooks and Scott Gittens.
Swann atoned for his earlier error by keeping Humberston on level terms with some fine saves.
Grant put Humberston back in front when he finished off a counter-attack.
But Pattesons were almost level when a shot from a free-kick appeared destined for the top corner – only for Swann to pull off a superb save.
And Humberston put the game to bed late on when Cass cheekily scooped the ball over the keeper's head from close range.
Jack Wilson's strike was enough to book East Trans Pelham's spot in the next round as they beat RIS FC 1-0.
Tower Bucharest needed penalties to beat Cleethorpes United after drawing 2-2 in open play. Tommy King and Marcus Mason were on target for United.
David Simpson scored a hat-trick as Blossom Way County beat Bridge 5-4. Mark Leonard and Ben Taylor also scored for Blossom. Bridge registered through an Alex Hollamby double and a Jordan White own goal.
DMS beat Crows Nest 5-0. Craig Mitchell's double was accompanied by goals from Daniel Carter, Callum Day and Stefan Melin.
Empire Utd won 6-0 against Clee Community ESL.
Dan Freeman scored twice and brother Ben once as Healing beat Humberston Grosvenor 6-2. Tom Parker, Adam Mason and Henry Lawless scored for Healing. Matthew Cope and Robert Mair netted for Grosvenor.
The Cricketers inflicted a first defeat of the season on Millfields – who netted through Aaron Love and Leeroy Metcalfe – when they won 3-2.
John Willis' double helped Cleethorpes Town draw 2-2 with Tap & Spile. Town went on to win on penalties.
The Imperial Red Star beat SK Smugglers AFC 6-1. Lee Chisnall, Joe Burns, Reece Clarke, Chris Harmer, Dave Maggs and Ben Walker scored for Red Star.
Darren Lambert scored a hat-trick, and Richard Dunks was also on target, as Inkworks won 4-1 at Wheatsheaf. Jack Stevens got the hosts' goal.
DAVE Deane bagged a high five as Grimsby Rovers ripped through FC Ntex in the Junior Challenge Cup.
Rovers triumphed 14-0 as, in addition to Deane's five goals, Liam Callaghan bagged a hat-trick, Kyle Hanson a double, and Nathan Chandler, Aaron Wilkins, Daniel Philips and Tom Watters also netted.
Danny Hawkey also notched five as Honest Lawyer beat Clee Community ESL 2nds 6-1. Also on target were Ash Leggett, for Honest Lawyer, and Jordan Barber.
Mark Courtley and Luke Sargent both netted hat-tricks as cup holders Abatis Fire and Security beat Abatis Athletic 9-2. Sam Aisthorpe, Matthew Thompson and Joe Mitchell also notched for the winners, while Antony Carter and Nick Lacey scored for Athletic.
In a ten-goal thriller, Oak Tree eventually overcame Winns on penalties. Earlier, Oak Tree netted through a Jamie-Mark Dixon double, Richard King and a Gary Kirwin own goal. For Winns, Danny Wood and Mickey Burton notched braces, while James Rouse also scored.
Nathan Green scored a hat-trick, alongside a Jamie Webster goal, as West Marsh OB beat Spiders Web 4-2.
Tom McQuire struck twice as Clee Motors beat Redstar GB 4-2. James Kay and Lee Sinclair were also on target for the winners, while Kevin Swaine notched for Redstar.
Laceby Arms needed penalties against Laceby Acres Utd after a goalless draw at full-time.
AA Property New Waltham won 4-2 against Olivers Wine Bar. Darryl Doherty scored twice, and Keith Playford and Adam Rowe also netted for AA Property. David Kendall and Mark Cody scored for Olivers.
Ryan Woolliss' goal guided East Marsh Empire though, 1-0, against Ace Homecare.
A Simon Peck double and Jamie Cutler's goal fired RER Haulage to a 3-0 win at AFC Waltham.
Robert Ironmonger and Karl Eklund's goals saw Buddies II Athletic win 2-1 against Sporting Soltire, for whom Roy Ling scored.
Chris Duffield and Dan Miall both netted doubles alongside goals from Gary Jackson and Mark Palmer as Electrical Appliance Grimsby FC beat The County 6-3.
Advance Alarms knocked out Healing 2nds 5-2. Ashley Kiff, Karl Stephen, Will Hopkinson, Scott Barber and Marc Moncaster scored for Advance, Garry Fawn and Danny Jackson for Healing.
Chris East and Jamie Wilkes fired Immingham County to a 2-1 win against Old Lloyds, for whom Lee Williams scored.
Nathan Ellis' lob and a Martin Squire header gave Kings Head Waltham a 2-1 victory against LLS Allstars.
Andrew Crane's double and a David Miller goal helped Crows Nest 3rds win 3-1 at Seachill Athletico. Ryan Cuthbert netted for the beaten team.