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Leaders Pilkington lose for the first time since October against Middlewich
MIDDLEWICH Town inflicted a first defeat since October on long-time leaders Pilkington to re-open the Division One title race, writes Andrew Simpson.
Owen Ellis, Craig Millington and James Collins were on target for in-form Witches in a 3-0 win, ending the table-toppers’ nine-matches unbeaten run.
Dave Parr’s men climb to fourth position in the table, trailing Pilks by 17 points but with seven matches in hand.
Second-placed Eagle Sports spurned the chance to close the gap further after they were held at home by Golborne Sports, while Lostock Gralam recovered from last week’s defeat to win by the odd goal in seven at former champions Styal..
Elsewhere Kwame Barnett’s double was a highlight for Northwich Villa in their five-goals drubbing of Gamesley.
The 2009 champions have now won back-to-back games after failing to win any of the previous six top flight games stretching back to September.
Rock-bottom Linotype picked up a point at Knutsford, while Rylands and Club AZ played out a 1-1 draw too.
Grappenhall Sports returned to the Division Two summit as a reward for beating Warrington neighbours Moore, replacing Denton Town after they were held at Crewe FC..
There were wins too for promotion hopefuls Monk - for whom Leigh Marsden and David Hughes were on target – and Whitchurch Alport at the expense of Runcorn Town reserves and Rudheath Social respectively.
Barnton have lost four of the past five games after their latest reverse at the hands of Poynton, while Malpas edged out Congleton Town reserves.
Saturday March 5
JB Parker Challenge Cup Quarter final
Garswood United 2 Billinge 0 (Garswood away to Club AZ in last four)
Eagle Sports 2 Golborne Sports 2
Knutsford 1 Linotype1
Northwich Villa 5 Gamesley 1
Pilkington 0 Middlewich Town 3
Rylands 1 Club AZ 1
Styal 3 Lostock Gralam 4
Congleton Town reserves 1 Malpas 2
Crewe 1 Denton Town 1
Grappenhall Sports 3 Moore United 1
Monk 2 Runcorn Town reserves 0
Poynton 3 Barnton 1
Whitchurch Alport 3 Rudheath Social 1