FOOTBALL: Free-scoring Ardley march on at the top

The Oxford Times: Ryan Brooks grabbed Ardley United's opening goal Ryan Brooks grabbed Ardley United's opening goal

Ardley United retained their five-point lead at the top of the Uhlsport Hellenic League Premier Division with a 4-1 defeat of visitors Oxford City Nomads.

Ardley, whose 81-year-old assistant manager Brian Robinson received an FA long service award before the kick-off, opened the scoring in the 19th minute when Ryan Brooks fired home from Harry Brock’s cross.

Brock doubled Ardley’s advantage on the hour with his shot bouncing out of Juan Martin’s grasp and into the net.

A minute later, Ardley were 3-0 up when Nomads defender Paul Alder miskicked his attempted clearance, and the ball was caught by the wind, before flying over Martin for an own goal.

Louis Joyce pulled one back for Nomads following a goalmouth scramble in the 83rd minute, before substitute Steve Howkins sealed Ardley’s victory deep into time added on, netting after his first effort was saved.

Richie Claydon grabbed the winner as a makeshift Wantage Town side moved back up to second place with a 2-1 victory over Ascot United at Alfredian Park.

Tom Butler had given Wantage a 39th-minute lead with a speculative 30-yard drive which flew into the bottom corner, only for Joe Yeates to bundle home the equaliser a minute later.

But Claydon had the last word, heading home a free-kick in the 76th minute.

Graham Edney’s first-half strike gave new Abingdon United boss Andy Zoldan his first win at the third attempt in a 1-0 victory at Brimscombe & Thrupp.

Edney swept the ball home in the 37th minute, and Abingdon were then indebted to keeper Gareth Tucker, who pulled off fine saves to deny David Woodfield and Chris Greenhough in the second half.

Jack Ross’s 88th-minute equal-iser earned bottom club Abingdon Town a 1-1 draw at home to high-flying Reading Town.

Toby Nowell had given high-flying Reading the lead on the hour.

Ollie Zaja’s second-minute strike gave Headington Amateurs a 1-0 win at Woodley Town in Division 1 East.

It saw Headington cut the gap to leaders AFC Hinskey, who were without a game, to five points.

Jamie Essex’s double set Chinnor on the way to a 3-0 home win over Didcot Town Res.

Essex netted in the 30th and 55th minutes, before Jonathan Feaver clinched victory in the 70th minute.

Michael Davies’s late equaliser earned Milton United a 2-2 draw at Henley Town.

Mitchell Cooper and Adam Bruce traded early goals for Henley and Milton respectively.

Warren Baxter restored the hosts’ lead, but Davies levelled in the closing minutes.

James McMahon’s 24th-minute penalty gave Easington Sports a 1-0 win at Carterton in Division 1 West.

Jozef Fullerton bagged a brace in North Leigh United’s 2-2 draw at home to mid-table rivals Tuffley Rovers.

Fullerton’s 25th-minute opener was cancelled out by Elliott King three minutes into the second half.

Fullerton struck again in the 80th minute, but Mark Wallington levelled five minutes from time.

Old Woodstock Town went down 2-0 at home to New College Swindon.

David Kinuthia fired the hosts into a 31st-minute lead, and Jordan Ball sealed Woodstock’s fate two minutes from time.

Hook Norton drew 0-0 at home to Fairford Town.

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