THERE was heartbreak for Ross Juniors men as their North Gloucestershire Two title hopes were sunk by table top rivals Lydbrook 2nds in midweek.
The Wyeside villagers beat Ross 3-1 in what proved to be the title decider, leapfrogging Juniors by a point, with the hosts then being awarded a walkover on Saturday in their final fixture at home to no-show Milkwall 2nds, who are relegated with Ruardean Hill A.
Steve Baldwin, Lee Morton and Jack Stacey scored the goals against Juniors, who by way of consolation are also promoted to NG One with a game still to play tonight (Wednesday, May 3), away to Mushet & Coalway 2nds.
Lydbrook Athletic were celebrating a triple success, with their 1sts also beating Westbury 5-2 on Thursday in the JO Roberts Cup, before monstering Milkwall 1sts 15-0 to go 14 points clear at the top of the Premier League, with promotion in the bag to the Gloucestershire Northern Senior League.
Incredibly, Henry McAllister scored a magnificent seven on Saturday, while Ryan Wilkes notched four, Nathan Green two, and Mike Donaldson and Ben Jones one apiece in a total mismatch.
Ruardean Hill Rangers 1sts were forced to play three times in six days thanks to a fixture pile-up in the Gloucestershire County League.
First up a week last Tuesday they lost 4-1 at home to lowly Hardwicke, but then bounced back on Saturday with a 3-0 win over visitors Stoke Gifford.
The weekend game was only five minutes in when Alex Stephens made a great run from halfway beating three defenders before slotting past Lewis Jefferies to put Hill in front.
A further Hill chance came when Charley Mason’s free kick found Fin Jones but his header went straight to Jefferies.
Stoke Gifford’s Karem Karakus’s free kick from just outside the box was expertly saved by Steve Bowles. And the visitors’ Paul Cronin then made a great run and squared across goal but Jayden Crosbie somehow shot wide from just six yards.
On 40 minutes Crosbie made a great run before a last-ditch tackle forced a corner, then just before the break Karakus twisted and turned in the box before dragging his shot wide.
And on 52 minutes, Jones made it 2-0 closing a defender down and making the tackle to slot past Jefferies who was way off his line.
Gifford pressed well for the next 20 minutes but the hosts held firm.
And five minutes from time Hill made it three, a long ranger from Josh Sladen which Jefferies made a hash of.
Two days later, Hill travelled across the Severn to face Sharpness and despite their previous exertions made a good battle of it, Aaron Underwood putting Hill in front in the first half before losing 2-1.
A Blaine Smith goal earned English Bicknor a 1-1 draw at FC Lakeside in Gloucestershire Northern One to leave themselves seventh with two games to play.
Howle Hill could still finish fourth in the NG Premier Division headed by Lydbrook, if they win their last game away to second-placed Bream Amateurs on Thursday (May 4).
But they suffered two losses last week – a 4-1 reverse at English Bicknor 2nds in midweek, followed by a 4-3 Saturday defeat at home to Westbury, Chris Baverstock, Ben Fletcher and Adam Collier with the consolations.
Ruardean Hill 2nds secured safety at the bottom and sent Blakeney down with a 2-1 midweek home win.
Mitcheldean will join them in the NG Premier Division after guaranteeing themselves promotion from Div One with a 7-0 home win over Yorkley on Saturday.
But a 2-1 midweek away defeat to Soudley meant they had to beat Whitecroft 2nds by more than six goals last night (Tuesday, May 2) to deny Newnham the title.
Longhope finished fourth in NG Two after a 3-3 midweek draw at home to Soudley 2nds and a 7-3 away win over Viney St Swithins 2nds on Saturday, Patrick Cuthbert firing a hat-trick in the latter.
Ruardean United are promoted from Division 3, but the previous week’s 4-3 loss in their final game to title rivals Sling, who beat Ellwood 2nds 3-2 in midweek and Rank Outsiders 2nds 10-0 on Saturday, meant they had to settle for second.
Lydbrook A were still bottom after a 6-1 loss away to third-placed Mitcheldean 2nds and a 7-1 defeat on the road to Staunton & Corse A at the weekend, but had the chance to overhaul Harrow Hill A in their final game away to Redbrook 2nds last night.