Silsden 3 HEMSWORTH MW 2 -

Silsden were almost back at full strength before the late withdrawal of Gavin Finn but the inclusion of coach, Paul Schofield hardly weakened the side.

But the unfortunate Schofield lasted only one minute - and he didn't even touch the ball - before he was replaced.

On Hemsworth's first attack keeper Martin Foulger handled outside the area and was sent off. The referee had no choice even though he acknowledged that the keeper's initial save had been with his body and a rebound had struck his hand.

Schofield was brought off to enable Adam Ackroyd to replace Foulger in goal. The free kick was charged down and Andy Holden headed the follow-up off the line.

Silsden rose to the challenge and were unfortunate not to take the lead when Martin Bland hit the bar and Jimmy Hedges hit the post. Andy Holden, returning from injury was providing the ammunition from the right and he hit the bar with one cross

Ryan Taylor missed a clear opening for Hemsworth but Silsden were in control and Hedges beat the keeper and crossed for Dale Hoyle to head home.

Hoyle is beginning to look sharper by the week as he gains match practice. Ackroyd then saved from Collins before Bland had three good headers, one just over the bar, one saved and a third handled in the box. Holden made no mistake with the spot kick.

Silsden went in two up at the break and were firmly in command.

The Silsden back three of Michael Rosser, Gary Lund and Michael Rhodes had been well up to the task denying the Miners several times in the first half but Hemsworth scored early in the second half when they beat the offside trap leaving Ryan Taylor with a simple tap in.

Within minutes Silsden had restored their two goal margin when Martin Bland fired home Holden's cross. Matthew Bland was commanding in midfield and threatened the Hemsworth goal with a fierce drive which was just tipped over. Another effort was well saved whilst brother Martin had another shot blocked following a Holden cross.

The efforts of Probert and the impressive Lloyd came to nought and Silsden's ten men began to stroke the ball about confidently. Peter Hanson was picking up the pieces in midfield and the Bland twins combined well in the move of the match, Matthew firing just over the bar.

Hemsworth scored with five minutes to go when Andy Davis drove into the bottom corner of Ackroyd's net but the tenacious ten held firm and were always in control.

Steeton saw their climb up the table halted when they were beaten 2-1 by Otley Town.

The home side secured a 1-0 lead at half time thanks to a strike from Steve Boddy, but after the break Chris Smith scored for Steeton only to see the hopes of victory snatched away by a Lee Grice goal for the Otley side.

Howard Wellwood scored the only goal for Keighley Shamrocks as they were beaten by Altofts in Division One. All the goals were scored in a hectic first half and despite tremendous effort Shammies could not battle their way back into the game.

Silsden second XI scored either side of half time at Hemsworth through Stephen Throup and Martin Maude. Lee Reilly netted a hat-trick in the next ten minutes to give Silsden a 5-0 lead. Two late goals from the Miners didn't detract from an excellent performance.

Next week Silsden travel to Brighouse in the League Cup (ko 1.45) and the reserves entertain Lower Hopton at the Keighley Road ground (ko 2.00)

Picture shows: Silsden goal scorer Martin Bland slides the ball home Pictures: David Brett