Non-league round-up by Brian Jeeves
CHELMSFORD City’s dream of a trip to Wembley remains alive after the Clarets produced a superb Buildbase FA Trophy third round performance, holding former Football League outfit, Tranmere Rovers, to a 1-1 draw at Prenton Park.
Robbie Willmott gave the Clarets a shock lead before the break before Cole Stockton levelled for the Birkenhead side with twenty minutes remaining. The sides will now replay the tie at Chelmsford’s Melbourne Stadium to see who progresses to the next stage of the competition.
Braintree Town also face a replay after Ryman League club, Dulwich Hamlet, held the Iron to a tense goalless draw in front of a 608 crowd at Cressing Road.
Dagenham & Redbridge moved into second place in the National League after a dramatic late victory over Chester FC at Victoria Road.
Jake Sheppard gave the home side the lead on the stroke of half-time. However, goals from Luke George and Tom Shaw appeared to have handed the visitors a shock victory. But with time swiftly running out, Corey Whitely levelled from the penalty spot, then Jordan Maguire-Drew bagged a last minute winner.
As a result, the Daggers are now just three points behind leaders, Lincoln City, but having played a game more.
In the National League South, Concord Rangers found themselves on the receiving end of a 4-0 drubbing from promotion chasing Ebbsfleet United at Stonebridge Road. Bradley Bubb grabbed a brace for the hosts, while Kenny Clark and Sean Shields were also on target. East Thurrock United were also beaten. The Rocks went down 3-2 to Hemel Hempstead Town at Rookery Hill. Michael Clark and Tom Wraight were on target for the home side, but Jordan Parkes won it for Hemel with a stoppage time spot-kick.
Christian Assombalonga and Lewis Taaffe ensured Billericay Town maximum points from a 2-1 Ryman League Premier Division victory at Havant & Waterlooville. Meanwhile, a brace from Mario Noto earned Harlow Town a 2-0 success at Staines Town.
Alexander Akrofi’s fourth-minute goal was enough to see Tonbridge Angels inflict a 1-0 defeat on Canvey Island at Park Lane, and there was a 2-1 loss for Grays Athletic at home to Hendon. Lartey Sarpong’s consolation proved scant reward for the hosts.
In Ryman League Division One North, Ronnie Winn, Richard Halle (2), Charlie Stimson, Jordan Clark (penalty) and Mark Onyemah were on target as Thurrock hammered Tilbury 6-1 at Ship Lane. Jack Barham responded for the Dockers. AFC Hornchurch were 1-0 derby winners over Romford. Former Southend United man, Teddy Nesbitt, with the only goal at Bridge Avenue. Haringey Borough won 2-1 at Dereham, Town thanks to strikes from Adrian Markus and
Brightlingsea Regent edged closer to the summit after a Tom Richardson goal saw them beat league leaders, Maldon & Tiptree, 1-0 at North Road, while Heybridge Swifts were 3-0 winner over Thamesmead Town, Reece Grant (2) and an Adam Adeoye Yusuff penalty with the Swifts goals.
Ryan Imbert hit Witham Town’s goal in a 1-1 draw with Soham Town Rangers and it was the same outcome at Norwich United, where Jamie Guy’s goal earned Great Wakering Rovers a share of the spoils. Elsewhere, Aveley slipped to a 2-0 defeat at Ware.
Clapton moved to the top of the Essex Senior League after Johnny Ashman’s first half penalty saw off Waltham Forest at the Old Spotted Dog ground. Barking slipped to second as they were held to an exciting 2-2 draw at Hullbridge Sports.
Ilford were the big winners of the day, thrashing London Bari 6-2 at the Cricklefield Stadium. Meanwhile, Barkingside won a thrilling encounter at Enfield 1893 by 4-3. Tower Hamlets were 4-1 winners over Burnham Ramblers and there was a 1-0 win for Stansted at Haringey & Waltham, while Sawbridgeworth Town edged out Sporting Bengal United 3-2.
Selected highlights from the ProKit UK Essex Olympian League saw London APSA win a thrilling Division One contest at Old Chelmsfordians by five goals to three. Runwell Sports saw off Galleywood by the odd goal in seven, while Great Baddow were 3-1 winners over Snaresbrook.
In Division Two, Rochford Town won 4-2 at Ramsden Scotia, while Ongar Town beat Old Barkabbeyans by two goals to nil. Toby were 3-1 winners at Ryan FC and FC Hamlets saw off Lakeside 2-1
In Division Three, Shoebury Town continued their steady progress with a 3-1 victory over Old Chelmsfordians Reserves.