Oak Tree boss is targeting unbeaten run after cup win
OAK Tree came out on top of a 12-goal thriller in a remarkable semi-final of the Junior Challenge Cup.
The Division Seven leaders knocked out tournament holders Abatis Fire and Security after wining a topsy-turvy match 7-5.
Gary Kirwin, Anthony Mitchell and Brendon Smyth all grabbed two goals apiece, with Robert Morrison also on the scoresheet for Oak.
Abatis replied with braces from Mark Courtley and Luke Sargent as well as a strike from Kris Hemsworth.
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After the game, Oak Tree secretary/manager Richard Kirwin, said: "This was a brilliant game to play in and watch.
"There was a great spirit in the side and the work rate was excellent. Abatis also played well."
Oak Tree will meet West Marsh Old Boys in the final after they won 1-0 against Clee Motors in their semi-final, thanks to a goal from Nathan Green.
But first, Oak Tree return to league action and face fifth-placed Pelham 1878 this weekend with Kirwin targeting an unbeaten season.
Pelham, managed by Jack Johnson, won't be daunted by the challenge however, after they knocked out Division Three outfit Millfields in the Memorial Cup earlier in the season.
Kirwin added: "We can focus on the league now and hope for a nice league and cup double.
"We are a couple of points clear with games in hand in Division Seven and have won all our games so far.
"It is difficult to single out any one player because we all play well as a team and when somebody is off his game the rest make up for it.
"We must not take our foot off the gas if we are to complete the season undefeated."
In the Lincs Sunday Cup, Luke Mascall hit four for Cleethorpes Town as they beat RM Imps 7-1 to set up a semi-final showdown with Grantham side The Ropsley Fox FC, who beat DMS FC 3-1.
Cleethorpes secretary Dave Patterson said: "We played well against the Lincoln side who are from an equivalent division to us in their Sunday League.
"We did what we had to do and, in the end, dominated much of the game."
This weekend, Town take on Inkworks from Division Two in the semi-final of the Senior Challenge Cup.
Patterson added: "We look forward to games like this, they are the sort we want.
"Many of their team were down watching us last weekend.
"They know what we are about and we expect a tough game.
"We are well placed in Division Three; leading the table by two points with an unblemished record and games in hand.
"This team is capable of breaking some records this season and deservedly so."
In the other semi-final, DMS – the only Division One side left in the cup – visit BBS Couriers in what could be another mouth-watering tie.
In Division Five, Old Lloyds (Ben Simpson, Lee Williams, Brett Williams) narrowly beat RER Haulage (James Auckland, Ben Cole) 3-2.
AFC Waltham (Thomas Bryan 2, Iain Ceclich 2, Aaron Roberts, Keil Thompson, Dan Moore) won 7-4 away to AA Property New Waltham (Paul Ancell, Darryl Doherty, Lee Smith, Keith Playford).
In a mid-table clash in Division Six, Grimsby Rovers (Liam Callaghan 2, David Deane 2, Nathan Chandler 2, Kyle Hanson, Carl Hewson) beat Seachill Athletico 8-3.
Elsewhere, Paul Hand (pen) scored for Kings Head Waltham in their 3-1 defeat by Winns (James Rouse, Daniel Wood), in what was a spirited display by the Kings Head men.
A hat-trick from Scott Barber sent Advance Alarms on their way to a 5-3 win over IFK Knottkoping in Division Seven.
In the Memorial Cup, Bridge's Andrew Bagnall, Bob Shadlock and Michael Shadlock were all on target as they won 3-2 against Ace Homecare (Carl Carroll, Daniel Rice).
They go through to the quarter-final as do Cromwell (Sean Carlile 4, Dave Carr, Luke Swallow, Kyle French), who beat Olivers Wine Bar (David Kendall, Ashley Collins) 7-2.
Immingham Town (Ben Coultas) needed penalties to progress at the expense of Police (Gareth Chandler) after drawing 1-1 in normal time.
They will play Spiders Web, who beat Deportivo Empire 2-0 in their clash.