IT was an emotional afternoon at Townfield as Winsford United played their first game since the passing of their forward Ross Aikenhead.

On Sunday night, Winsford announced Aikenhead had died and tributes poured in to a man who was their leading goalscorer this season.

After their scheduled trip to Cheadle Heath Nomads on Saturday was postponed – it is not known for certain whether or not this is linked to Aikenhead’s passing – Blues confirmed this morning that their Easter Monday trip to neighbours Barnton would go ahead and before kick off, a minute’s silence was held in the 23-year-old’s memory.

Barnton emerged as 4-3 victors in the North West Counties League Division One South game as Winsford found a 3-0 half-time deficit too much to come back from.

Tyler Magee gave the Villagers an early lead before Harvey Woodhouse and Will Igoe struck just before the break to put the hosts in command, but Winsford sensed an improbably comeback after the break as Reece Davies and Sam Cryer pulled goals back in the early stages of the second half.

Lee Turkington eased any Barnton nerves with a fourth goal just after the hour mark and while the visitors did have time to set up a grandstand finish as Adam Barlow netted in injury time, the hosts held on for victory.

There was also a minute's applause in Aikenhead's honour at the U Lock It Stadium before the derby clash between Witton Albion and 1874 Northwich.

When the game got going, a 3-0 defeat to their neighbours confirmed 1874's relegation from the Northern Premier League having gone into the match needing to win and hope results went their way to keep themselves alive.

For Albion, the results keeps them very much in the hunt for a play-off place in the NPL West Division – with main rivals City of Liverpool kept out of action by a waterlogged pitch, Jon Macken’s men moved level on points with the Merseysiders, who occupy the final top-five spot.

Elliot Rokka gave Witton an early lead, with second-half goals from Ben Harrison and Connor Hughes sealing victory in front of a crowd of over 900.

Northwich Guardian: Action from yesterday's Witton-1874 derbyAction from yesterday's Witton-1874 derby (Image: Karl Brooks Photography)

Northwich Guardian: Elliot Rokka celebrates scoring the opening goalElliot Rokka celebrates scoring the opening goal (Image: Karl Brooks Photography)