East Sussex Football League survives the weather - and Crowhurst go top of Premier despite not playing
Almost all of last weekend's East Sussex Football League programme was completed despite the appalling weather.
High winds and driving rain on Saturday afternoon couldn't prevent 17 league matches across the six divisions and two cup ties from reaching a conclusion.
Crowhurst went top of the Premier Division without even kicking a ball after receiving a walkover away to Rock-a-Nore.
The Crows now have nine points out of nine and are one clear of Bexhill Town, who rose to second courtesy of a 6-1 win away to Robertsbridge United.
Olwethu Peterson plundered a four-goal salvo, while Elliott Matthews and Lewis Wade also netted for an unbeaten Bexhill side which has played a game more than Crowhurst. Curtis Coombes scored the Robertsbridge consolation.
St Leonards Social climbed to third on the back of a 3-0 victory at home to Hawkhurst United. Kenny Butchers, Damien March and Adam Reilly struck for a Social team which boasts seven points from a possible nine.
A Dean Tincombe hat-trick couldn't prevent Wadhurst United losing 4-3 in a seven-goal thriller at home to Northiam 75. The goals of Philip Anim, Dean Hilton Huish, Joe Millar and Ryan Newman earned sixth-placed Northiam their second league success in three matches.
Bexhill AAC moved a point clear of three teams at the top of Division One after scoring a late penalty to earn a 2-2 draw away to South Coast Athletico.
AAC have played more games than anybody else in the second tier, however, and two of their pursuers have yet to drop a point. Harry Jackson scored a first-half double for fifth-placed Athletico, who are three points behind AAC having played two fewer matches.
SC Pass+Move Arrows moved up to third after making it three league wins out of four with a 2-1 victory at home to The JC Tackleway. Luke Davies and Samuel Townsend netted for the Arrows, while Toby Payne claimed Tackleway's goal.
Peche Hill Select picked up their first points at the fourth attempt by way of a 4-2 success at home to Sedlescombe Rangers II.
The goals of Regan Constable (2), Samuel Hall and Joseph Worsley got Peche Hill off the mark, despite Sean Howard and Matthew Dobbs finding the net for Sedlescombe.
Westfield II and Northiam 75 II remain level on points at the summit of Division Two - and they are now six clear of the rest.
The Westies still have the edge on goal difference after strikes by Kyle Young (2), Dayne Beaumont and Steve Payne secured a 4-1 win away to Catsfield.
Northiam have a game in hand, however, and they extended their winning league start to four matches with a 6-2 victory at home to Hooe.
Two goals apiece from Scott Embery, Stephen Housago and Kelvin Lowes preserved Northiam's 100 percent record, in spite of Callum Holt-Burgess and Tommy Warren registering for Hooe.
Third-placed Little Common II have been joined on six points by Sandhurst, who rose to fourth as a result of beating the Commoners 4-1.
James Found blasted a hat-trick and Jon Bilsby got the other for a Sandhurst side which has played a match fewer than Common, whose goal was scored by Rhys Jones.
Herstmonceux bagged their first league points at the fourth time of asking with a 2-1 success at home to Victoria Baptists. Charlie Chambers and Reece Mansfield notched for the victors, while Alex Costello struck for the fifth-placed Baptists.
Ninfield took advantage of a defeat for The JC Tackleway II to hit the front in Division Three by the small matter of goals scored.
League new boys Ninfield chalked up their third league win out of four with a 3-2 victory away to Bexhill AAC II. The goals of Mark Franks (2) and Dan Hart for Ninfield narrowly eclipsed those of Robert Milsom and Sam Morgan for an AAC team which came so close to its first point.
Tackleway's three-match winning start in the league was halted by a 3-0 loss away to Icklesham Casuals. Strikes by Phil Badrock, Sam Garner and Joe Maylam lifted the Casuals up to fifth.
Sovereign Saints II retained their two-point advantage at the top of Division Four thanks to a 4-0 win at home to fourth-placed Sedlescombe Rangers development.
Nicholas Barden, Luke Maglennon and Kieran Parks were among the scorers as Saints made it five league wins out of five.
Second-placed Hastings Comets kept up the pressure with a 3-0 victory away to South Coast Athletico II. Luke Darvill (2) and Ryan Penny got the goals for the Comets, who have 13 points from a possible 15.
Westfield III have opened up a three-point cushion in Division Five on the back of a 4-1 win away to Burwash.
Taylor Beale (2), Aaron Cochrane and Jack Harris were on target as Westfield took their tally to 10 points from a possible 12.
Second-placed Herstmonceux II and third-placed Hampden Park both dropped their first points after drawing 2-2 with each other at Eastbourne Sports Park.
Jake Barker bagged a brace for a Park side playing only its second league game, while Robbie Hodgson was among the scorers for a Herstmonceux team in its third league fixture of the campaign.
Hastings Comets II celebrated their first league victory as goals from Dylan Avery (2), Mike Zemanek, Kyle Wilson and Karim Taylor secured a 6-0 success at home to D&S Hastings Youth.
Both scheduled cup matches went ahead and Rye Town prevailed 2-1 away to Sidley United II in round one of the ESFL Graham Ormston Premier Travel Chauffeurs Challenge Cup.
Sam Hesmer's double decided the clash of two teams yet to drop a point in Division One in favour of a Rye team which will host top-flight Bexhill Town in the last 16.
Ticehurst won 3-1 at home to fellow Division Four outfit Orington in round one of the Robertsbridge Charity Junior Cup.
Danny McGahan (2) and Thomas Buckingham were on the scoresheet for Ticehurst, whose reward is a home quarter-final against Sandhurst. Ashley Jamieson grabbed Orington's goal.
Plenty more league fixtures are scheduled for this coming Saturday along with half a dozen Sussex Bluefin Junior Challenge Cup first-round ties.
Standings (played-points) - Premier Division: Crowhurst 3-9 (+5 goal difference), Bexhill Town 4-8 (+6), St Leonards Social 3-7 (+8), Punnetts Town 3-7 (+6), Battle Town 4-7 (+5), Northiam 75 3-6 (+3), Rock-a-Nore 4-3 (-2), Wadhurst United 4-3 (-5), Hawkhurst United 4-1 (-7), Robertsbridge United 4-0 (-19).
Division 1: Bexhill AAC 5-10 (+13), Sidley United II 3-9 (+9), SC Pass+Move Arrows 4-9 (+9), Rye Town 3-9 (+2), South Coast Athletico 3-7 (+5), The JC Tackleway 4-3 (-2), Peche Hill Select 4-3 (-3), Sedlescombe Rangers II 4-0 (-15), Battle Town II 4-0 (-18).
Division 2: Westfield II 5-12 (+10), Northiam 75 II 4-12 (+9), Little Common II 4-6 (+7), Sandhurst 3-6 (+3), Victoria Baptists 4-4 (-3), Catsfield 5-4 (-9), Bexhill Rovers 4-3 (-3), Hooe 3-3 (-5), Herstmonceux 4-3 (-9).
Division 3: Ninfield 4-9 (+2), The JC Tackleway II 4-9 (+2), AFC Hollington 3-7 (+15), Welcroft Park Rangers 3-6 (+9), Icklesham Casuals 4-6 (-7), Mountfield United 4-3 (-6), Peche Hill Select II 2-1 (-2), Bexhill AAC II 4-0 (-13).
Division 4: Sovereign Saints II 5-15 (+22), Hastings Comets 5-13 (+14), Ticehurst 4-9 (+6), Sedlescombe Rangers development 4-6 (-2), South Coast Athletico II 5-3 (-5), Parkfield 4-3 (-3), Orington 3-1 (-5), Battle Town III 4-0 (-27).
Division 5: Westfield III 4-10 (+16), Herstmonceux II 3-7 (+9), Hampden Park 2-4 (+14), Crowhurst II 2-4 (+4), Hastings Comets II 4-4 (-4), Burwash 4-4 (-5), Welcroft Park Rangers II 2-3 (0), D&S Hastings Youth 5-0 (-34). Sedlescombe Rangers IV withdrawn.
Saturday's fixtures (kick-off 3pm unless stated) - Premier Division: Bexhill Town v Northiam 75, Crowhurst v Robertsbridge United, Hawkhurst United v Rock-a-Nore, St Leonards Social v Punnetts Town, Wadhurst United v Battle Town.
Division 1: Battle Town II v Rye Town (4pm), Sedlescombe Rangers II v Bexhill AAC (2pm), Sidley United II v South Coast Athletico.
Division 2: Little Common II v Northiam 75 II (4pm), Sandhurst v Herstmonceux, Victoria Baptists v Hooe (1.30pm).
Division 3: AFC Hollington v Ninfield, Bexhill AAC II v Welcroft Park Rangers, Mountfield United v The JC Tackleway II.
Division 4: Orington v South Coast Athletico II (1.30pm), Parkfield v Ticehurst (4pm), Sedlescombe Rangers development v Battle Town III (4pm).
Division 5: Burwash v Hampden Park, Herstmonceux II v Westfield III (1.30pm), Welcroft Park Rangers II v Hastings Comets II.
Sussex Bluefin Junior Challenge Cup, 1st round (2.30pm): Cuckfield Town v Bexhill Rovers, Ifield Sports v Westfield II, Peche Hill Select v Crowhurst II, Sovereign Saints II v Crawley United, The JC Tackleway v Beaumont Park, Uckfield United v Icklesham Casuals.