Last Tuesday’s two standout games both saw plenty of action. Barrow’s 4-0 against title contenders Fleetwood win saw a hat trick from Andy Cook and an own goal from ex Bluebird Paul Edwards. Meanwhile York won 5-1 at Kettering, with new striker Jason Walker continuing his fine early season form with another double. Gateshead enjoyed a 3-1 win at Southport (a win which moved them to the top of the table), while Wrexham kept pace with a fine 3-0 win at home to Tamworth. Lincoln scored a 2-1 win away to Telford with a double for Kyle Perry. Other winners in this round of matches were Braintree who won 2-0 at Forest Green and Grimsby who beat Cambridge 2-1 at home. The others games between Darlington & Alfreton, Ebbsfleet & Newport, Hayes & Bath, Kidderminster & Stockport, and Mansfield & Luton all ended in 1-1 draws.
There were two games played on the Friday night and they both ended in deadlock as Fleetwood drew 0-0 with York and Stockport picked up another point away at Lincoln. Saturday came around and Gateshead’s brief run at the top of the league was ended despite their 2-1 win at Barrow (with Jon Shaw scoring twice against his old club) as Wrexham’s comprehensive 4-1 win at Alfreton (including a hat trick from Jake Speight) saw them to the top on goal difference. Four first half goals saw Luton beat Braintree 3-1, whilst goals from Louis Briscoe, Matthew Green and Ross Dyer brought a 3-0 win for Mansfield at home to Kettering. Luke Berry hit a late winner as Cambridge beat Hayes 2-1 while Shaun Newton also stuck a late winner from the penalty spot as Telford beat Newport 2-1. There were also wins for Tamworth away at Bath 2-0, Darlington who also won away 2-1 at Grimsby and Kidderminster, who beat Southport 2-0 at home. In the other game, Ebbsfleet drew 1-1 Forest Green.
The traditional Bank Holiday programme has been scrapped in most of the division over recent years, leaving the Blue Square Premier as the highest English league with games today. Table toppers Wrexham continued their good form as Jake Speight and Andy Morrell scored as they added to Fleetwood’s early season woes in a 2-0 win. Gateshead kept up the pressure as Jon Shaw scored again as Grimsby succumbed at Highbury. Kidderminster’s defended their 100% away record by beating Newport County, who by the end of the game were reduced to nine men. Ryan Bowman scored twice as Darlington kept their unbeaten home record in a 3-1 win against Lincoln City. The final play off place is currently occupied by Tamworth who were held to a 2-2 draw at home to Telford, with Kieran St Amie scoring twice for the home side.
York are the highest placed of the pre season favourites at 6th, despite losing 1-0 at home to unfancied Alfreton. Forest Green’ Reece Styche continued his excellent start to the season with two more as they beat Bath 2-0. In the other games Ebbsfleet defeated Braintree 3-2in a game with three penalties, Southport came from behind to beat Barrow 2-1 at home and Mansfield ended Stockport’s unbeaten start with a 1-0 win. Kettering vs. Cambridge ended 0-0 and Hayes & Yeading’s game with Luton ended in a 2-2 draw.
The top goal scorer is currently Gateshead’s Jon Shaw with 7 goals, Reece Styche of Forest green follows with 6 and York City’s Jason Walker with five.
One step down the pyramid in the Blue Square North, Gainsborough Trinity stole a march on the top flight last Tuesday by dismissing the first manager of the season. After losing two of their first three games, former Aston Villa manager Brian Little was sacked by chairman Peter Swann, who has taken temporary charge alongside director of football Steve Housham.