Newark Alliance Premier Division leaders RHP were beaten 5-1 by Wheatsheaf United at the YMCA Sports Centre
After the festive break the Newark Alliance returned with cup upsets, shock league defeats and postponed fixtures.
The biggest eyebrow-raiser of the weekend was Wheatsheaf United’s 5-1 win over Premier Division league leaders RHP.
The league clash was not shy of drama and a red card for teenager Luke McClymont typified the intensity and emotion in the match.
Leighton Nicholson hit RHP’s only goal as they went into half-time 3-1 down.
With the game still within reach, most were expecting an RHP fightback, but it wasn’t to be as Wheatsheaf confirmed the host’s second league defeat of the season.
Adam Allsopp, Calum Law, Bradley Wells, Kieran Wells (2) were the scorers for Wheatsheaf.
Newark Town capitalised on RHP’s slip up as they put seven past bottom side Holy Trinity.
Joe Braithwaite opened the scoring in the 34th minute and struck again six minutes later to double his side’s lead.
Captain Luke Parsons put the game out of sight in the 47th minute and from then on, Town were in control.
Daryl Price scored his 13th of the season to make it 4-0, and to their credit, Trinity replied through Richard Dyson’s strike.
However, three goals in four minutes from Price, Tom Perkins and Ben Lund rubbed salt into Trinity’s wounds as Town pulled level with RHP on goal difference.
Sitting two points off top spot with a game in-hand, Town can go first with a win, and one fixture could also turn things around for Trinity too, as three points could see them go as high as fifth.
A last-ditch tackle from David Michael saved the three points for Witham Wanderers, who came from behind to win 2-1 against Farnsfield Villa in Division One.
The win moved Witham up to third, one point behind league leaders East Bridgeford Rangers.
Joseph Major opened the scoring for Farnsfield just before the half-hour mark as he neatly converted a penalty.
Minutes later, Wayne Martini pulled his side level, again coming from the penalty spot.
In the opening stages of the second-half Witham went ahead as Nathan Arkle headed Martini’s back-post cross past the keeepr.
After a highly competitive 90-minutes, the game entered additional time and Witham defender Michael made a goal-preventing and match-winning recovery tackle to seal the points.
Elsewhere in Division One, Newark Flowserve Reserves lost 3-2 to Old Magnusians at Lowfields, and things turned sour after John Feeney’s dismissal.
Kevin Sullivan’s opener in the tenth minute was followed by Scott Walker’s strike five minutes later as Flowserve went into half-time 2-1 up.
However, having gone down to ten men, Old Mags capitalised and goals from Daniel Craggs, Rhys Watson and Jason Lam completed the second-half comeback.
Rose And Crown survived their first major scare of the season as they fought back from 2-0 down to beat Bleasby 3-2 in the Newark Alliance Second Division.
After taking a two-goal lead into half-time, it looked as if Bleasby were going to end Rose’s 100% record.
However, goals from Zak Edlin, Fraser Hallam and Sam Bartle prevented that and moved Rose two points clear at the top.
Edlin started the comeback when he calmly slotted a penalty after Ricky O’Connell was fouled in the box and Hallam pulled his side level, climbing highest from Callum Barnes’ free-kick.
Bartle completed the comeback with a strike from 25 yards, despite the best efforts of the Bleasby shot-stopper, who could only parry his effort into the net.
Elsewhere, doubles from Ronald Kennedy and James Martin ensured an away victory and three points for RHP Reserves, as they beat Team Knowhow 4-1.
The hosts went into half-time 2-0 down, and managed to pull one back through Andrew Walton, but it was nothing more than a consolation.
Holy Trinity Reserves hosted Fernwood in the final arranged league fixture, but a late referee drop-out saw the match go down as friendly.
Despite no league points on the line, the game went ahead and gave both sides a chance to regain fitness before they meet again on Sunday.
Josh Johnson’s late header proved to be the only difference as Fernwood won 1-0.
In the Pat Jepson Memorial Trophy a new look Grove side lost 3-1 to Collingham.
Grove took a 1-0 first-half lead but a second-half fightback saw goals from Adam Hillary and Tom McGill, Jack Town as Collingham earned the three points.
In the same competition, East Bridgford Rangers beat winless Bottesford 5-1.
Thomas Staples, Bassi Okon (2) Max Shenton and Benjamin Castell were on the scoresheet for East Bridgford, while Lee Marshall hit the home side’s only goal.
In the Willie Hall Memorial Trophy, Second Division Laxton Athletic provided one of the upsets of the round as they beat the Premier Division’s third-placed side Walesby 4-3 after extra-time.
In the County Cup, Barkestone-le-Vale beat Oakthorpe Athletic 3-2, while Newark Flowserve lost 1-0 at home to Nell Gwyn.