The JD Welsh Premier League’s phase two kicked off from Thursday night and throughout the weekend, and there were goals in abundance with 24 scored across the league’s six games.
Connah’s Quay Nomads 1-1 Bala Town
There is no love lost between these two sides as they are direct opponents for automatic European qualification, and they more than matched each other in an entertaining 90 minutes streamed live on Facebook by S4C.
After a battling opener to the game, which was effected by a heavy pitch, Michael Bakare sent a piledriving effort past Bala keeper Ashley Morris to give the Nomads a first half lead. They enjoyed a good half from then on, going close with Andy Owens just missing a cross into the Bala area.
Bala fought back with a strong second half display in which ex-Nomad Lewis Short came back to haunt his side with a powerful low finish from around 20 yards into the bottom right corner of John Danby’s net.
The result reflected the game, but both sides will need to find victories quickly as the top six race for Europe gets increasingly tight.
Cefn Druids 2-2 TNS
Top six new boys Cefn Druids got off to the best possible start on Friday evening when they held TNS to a draw at the Rock.
Both sides had chances in a rapid start to the first half, before TNS got off the mark with a 7th minute header from Connell Rawlinson. A valiant Druids side stayed in the game and reaped the rewards with a 39th Alec Mudimu equaliser.
But the drama didn’t stop there, with two goals coming in injury time of the first half. Rawlinson sent the Saints ahead once again, striking in the middle of a Druids’ box scramble on 45+1, but Piskorski hit back two minutes later to ensure the scores were level after a scintillating first half.
An equally competitive second half followed, but no more goals came leading to a big draw for Cefn Druids who have made a real statement by holding the Champions at home in their first ever top six game.
Bangor City 3-0 Cardiff Met
Kevin Nicholson, Gary Taylor-Fletcher and co were the happiest men in the top six after the weekend’s action, as they were the only team to claim a victory in the mini-division.
Cardiff Met are somewhat a bogey team to Bangor, but Taylor-Fletcher cooled fears of a Students win with a 7th minute opener from the penalty spot.
Second half goals followed from Anthony Miley and Dean Rittenburg in what was a controlled and professional performance by Bangor, who move to second in the league joint on points with Connah’s Quay.
The Citizens will be anxious to stay above their rivals for European football for the remaining nine games of the season, in which case they will secure Europa League football for the second consecutive time.
Carmarthen Town 3-1 Prestatyn Town
This was a huge six pointer at the bottom of the table, with a defeat for either side nothing short of a disaster in terms of their survival campaign hopes.
After a cagey first half, Mike Parker sent Prestatyn ahead in the 49th minute, getting on the end of a free kick delivery to give the Seasiders the advantage.
Carmarthen then had two goals ruled offside, but just as it looked like their luck had ran out, a 15 minute spell saw them run out 3-1 winners after a Mark Jones brace and Luke Bowen strike.
The win sends Carmarthen up to the 11th, and joint on points with 12th placed Prestatyn. Both sides have much to do still as they are seven points from safety as it stands.
Barry Town 3-1 Aberystwyth Town
Aberystwyth’s recent good form was ended by a rejuvenated Barry Town performance on Saturday.
An opening goal from new signing Jonathan Hood sent Barry ahead on 24 minutes, with Gavin Chesterfield’s side managing to hold onto their lead despite heavy possession for Aberystwyth in the first half.
Jordan Cotterill and Kayne McLaggon ensured Barry the victory in the second half with Declan Walker scoring a consolation for Aberystwyth.
The three points are valuable to Barry Town as they chase the 7th place play off spot, with Aberystwyth hoping their loss will turn out to be a blip after a strong end to phase one and reaching the JD Welsh Cup quarter finals.
Llandudno 3-4 Newtown AFC
It was a seven goal thriller at Llandudno on Saturday in a rapid game where neither side rested on their laurels.
Robbie Parry opened the scoring for Llandudno on 10 minutes, but after a Nick Rushton equaliser on 32 minutes, Danny Shaw sent Llandudno 2-1 up in the 37th minute.
However, Kieran Mills-Evans equalised for Newtown on the stroke of the first half to send the sides in at 2-2 for the break.
Second half goals from Mills Evans and Neil Mitchell sent Newtown 4-2 up, with a 90+3 goal from Shaw making it 4-3.
Mitchell and Shaw’s goals came in the 92nd and 93rd minute, and the action didn’t end there with a melee reducing both sides to 10 men in a fiery encounter that had everything.
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