Agony for Baguley in the Manchester Amateur Cup

Baguley Athletic bowed out of the Manchester Amateur Cup after agonisingly losing their semi-final with Middleton on penalties.

The L & C outfit, enjoying their first season in the league, fell two goals behind early on as Middleton flew out of the traps.

But Baguley upped their game with a neat finish from Lee Hendley reducing the arrears before the break.

Their predatory Argentinian striker Paulo Ortiz had a typically clinical finish to take the game into a penalty shoot-out.

But it was not to be as Middleton held their nerve to win the shoot-out by 9-8 to deny Baguley a final against fellow L & C team Eccles United.

There was plenty of domestic cup action with three of the top teams making their way into the next round of the Rhodes Cup, featuring teams from the L & C’s top two divisions.

Manchester Challenge Cup finalists Abacus Media were in a tight contest with Division One champions Chadderton Cott and led with an early strike from Luke Perkin.

Cott showed intent to level before the break but Abacus dominated the second half to ease into the next round by 3-1.

Shaw Athletic also did Division One proud as they held Premier title contenders De La Salle to 1-1 at half-time but it was not enough to prevent a 3-2 win for De La Salle.

Rochdalians also took on another top team in Division One Signol Athletic but showed their enduring class with a comfortable 3-0 win.

The Wray Cup for teams in divisions two and three had plenty of goals, led by high-flying Hattersley who beat South Manchester 10-2 and not far behind were Stretford Paddock reserves with a 6-1 cruise over Woohouses.

Irlam Tiger Rangers were also on song as they won 5-2 at Newton.

There was plenty of action in the Whitehead Cup, contested by Division A and B teams, which featured a thriller at Milton Reserves as they ended normal time level at 5-5 against Moston Brook reserves who led 4-2 at half-time.

The penalty shoot out was equally dramatic as Milton won 8-7.

It was also close in a local derby at Aldermere reserves as they took on Old Stretfordians reserves.

This also ended deadlocked at 2-2 with Strets edging the shoo-out 4-3 to deny Aldermere a league and cup double.
The other three ties were also very tight and Flixton JFC saw visitors Kartel SC win 2-1, AFC Oldham reserves scored the only goal of their game at Greater Manchester reserves and Hillgate won their local derby against Spurley Hey by 2-1.

There were four games in the Hellawell Shield for teams in divisions C and D which saw straightforward wins for Bury Ams reserves by 5-0 at AFC Oldham fourths, Eccles United reserves by 3-0 at Didsbury reserves and Village Manchester reserves who registered a 2-0 win over Urmston Town Vale.

But it needed another penalty shootout at AFC Stockport Warriors after a 2-2 stalemate with Mellor Development who prevailed 5-4 on penalties.

Limited league action meant no games in the Premier division and just two in Division One which featured a relegation battle between Trafford United and Didsbury.

In a game played in excellent spirit Didsbury looked home and dry as a hat-trick from Jonny Todd took them into a comfortable 3-1 lead with 15 minutes to go but in the end they had to hang on to win 4-3 as United came back with a strong finish.

The other game saw Bury Ams pick up some useful points in a 2-0 win at Old Stretfordians.

In Division Two, Wythenshawe Wanderers closed the big lead on Hattersley to eight points with an emphatic 5-1 victory at Mellor.

Just two games in Division Three which did not affect the title race. There were comfortable wins for Elton Lib Hargreaves by 7-0 over Aldermere and Radclyffe by 3-0 over Stoconians.

Busier in Division A with four games played and Santos continued their recent good run of form with their best win of the season by 9-1 over Greater Manchester FC.

On target with doubles for Santos were Liam Churchill, David Clegg and Ben Marshall backed by singles from Tom Barnes, Danny Brierley and Tristan Campbell.

Also in comfort zone were Salford Storm who sauntered to a 4-0 win at AFC Oldham reserves, Trafford United reserves who hammered Milnrow Firgrovia 7-1 and Salford Vics reserves who strolled to a 6-0 triumph over Woodsend Athletic.

In Division B Heaton Mersey tightened their grip on second spot with a 3-1 win at Parrs Wood Celtic and Moston Brook thirds beat Oldham Saints 4-1.

Dukinfield Athletic stay firmly in charge of Division C after a 5-1 win at Chadderton Park reserves and near neighbours Staly Lions won 3-1 at Altrincham Hale.

The solitary Division D game saw Mellor Development edge a five-goal thriller against Salford Vics Development.