Melksham Town made a great start in the first Premier Division clash of the season, defeating Cadbury Heath 4-0 at the Oakfield Stadium. Gary Higdon opened the scoring from the spot midway through the first half, slotting home after Jake Brown had been brought down in the opposition’s box. The hosts then put the result beyond doubt with a quick-fire double at the beginning of the second-half thanks to Warren Maidment and Luke Ballinger, with Dan Demkiv adding gloss to the result late on. On Tuesday, a 35th minute goal from Mark Wall handed Bradford Town a 1-0 win over Brislington, and at Shellards Road, three second-half goals from Jake Thomas, Justin Bishop and Daniel Clement saw Chipping Sodbury Town defeat Longwell Green Sports 3-0. Buckland Athletic were another side to get their league campaign up and running with a victory, defeating last year’s First Division champions Wellington 3-2. Two early goals from Richard Groves gave Buckland the perfect start, but Wellington fought back and grabbed a foothold in the game with Jack Taylor reducing the arrears on the half-hour mark. Cam Kelly then headed home to restore Buckland’s two goal advantage, with Ian Bellinger adding a late consolation for the visitors. Elsewhere, Odd Down put in a fine performance to defeat Wells City 3-0, with Jon Sage adding to goals in either half from Asa White. On Wednesday, Bridgwater Town laid down a marker in their first league game of the season, recording a 2-1 win away at Willand Rovers. The home side took the lead in the 20th minute through Brett Worbey from the spot, but two goals just before half-time from Josh White and former Cheddar hitman Callum Ham were enough for Bridgwater to complete the comeback win. In the First Division, goals from Lewis Coleman, Malick Jammeh and Charlie Babb fired Welton Rovers to a 3-0 win over Almondsbury, while there was a rare goalless draw between Chippenham Park and Devizes Town at Hardenhuish Park. The following evening, Radstock Town made it two wins from two with a thumping 4-0 win away at Bishops Lydeard thanks to goals from Josh Howe, Tom Stocks, Josh Witcombe and Matt Minnis. There was also an away win for Wincanton Town over Chard Town, with Marcus Cook banging in a hat-trick during their 3-1 win. Another man to score a treble on Wednesday evening was Oli Trevarthen, during Odland Abbotonians 7-0 drubbing of Corsham Town. Trevarthen scored twice in the first half, and once after the break, with Josh Williams as well as substitutes Matt Ellery (x2) and Joe Walters also getting on the scoresheet during the one-sided encounter. In the fixture at Meadow Lane, Westbury United were two goals ahead thanks to goals from Dan Kovacs and Jamie Jordan, but had to settle for a point after Malmesbury Victoria battled back to gain a 2-2 draw.
FA Cup Replays
There were a pair of away wins in the two FA Cup replays on Tuesday evening, with Ollie Barnes’ 111th minute penalty edging Clevedon Town past Bitton, while Josh Wadham, David O’Hare, Steve Murray and Craig Herrod were on the scoresheet as Street defeated Hallen 4-1. Bridport were victors in their replay on Wednesday night, with a 37th minute strike from Ed Butcher helping them to a 1-0 win over St Austell in front of a bumper crowd at St Mary’s Field.
Street made a winning start to their league campaign, with their forward line firing on all cylinders in a 4-0 win over Longwell Green Sports. After the home side had gone ahead in the third minute through David O’Hare, they added a second just before the half-hour mark when Steve Murray converted a penalty after he had been felled in the box. The result was put beyond doubt just before the break with Harry Foster scoring a third, before the same man wrapped up the victory with his second after half time. Bradford Town were another side to enjoy a big win, with three different goalscorers finding the net in their 3-0 triumph over Wellington. A long range effort from Will Haliston was the difference between the sides in the first-half, with his 20th minute strike breaking the deadlock for the hosts. Martin Lenihan then crossed for Anthony Conradi to make it 2-0 with his head, before Dan Cottle added a third in the closing stages. Bridport’s first league fixture of the season ended in victory for the Dorset side, with Richard Hedbitch and Leighton Thomas both impressing and scoring braces in a 4-1 win away at Cadbury Heath. At the Hand Stadium, Clevedon Town and Bitton were forced to share the points following a 1-1 draw. Former Weston-Super-Mare marksman Kane Ingram fired Clevedon into an 11th minute lead, but Bitton fought back with Tom Knighton knocking in a second-half leveller. At Silver Street, Odd Down came from two goals down to salvage a 2-2 draw away at Willand Rovers. Brett Worbey’s penalty was followed by a Luke Mortimore strike to put Willand 2-0 up at the break, but they were unable to hang on with Kye Simpson scoring twice after the break to maintain Odd Down’s unbeaten start to the campaign. Melksham Town fought back from an early deficit to win 3-1 at last season’s strugglers Hallen. Tyler Davis took just ten minutes to break the deadlock for the home side before Melksham began to gain the ascendancy with a double from Gary Higdon and a Luke Ballinger strike handing Darren Perrin’s side all three points. Buckland Athletic’s entertaining start to the season continued, with goals from Charlie Johansen, Richard Groves, Jared Lewington and Chris Wright edging them to a 4-3 win over Chipping Sodbury Town, while Charlie Aldom scored the only goal of the game in Cribbs 1-0 victory away at Shepton Mallet. Wells City survived an early sending off and a two-goal deficit to draw 2-2 with Hengrove Athletic. The visitors found themselves two-up inside half an hour thanks to goals from James Boyle and Jack Fillingham, and their job seemed ever easier once Paul Comley was dismissed for a poor challenge. However, Wells fought back, and after substitute Darren Maynard had cut the deficit in half, Louis Hadgi popped up to grab a deserved equaliser. Brislington bounced back from defeat in midweek to beat Bridgwater Town with goals in either half from Chris Gardener and Danny Hunt.
Westbury United’s promising start to the season continued, with a 2-0 win over Radstock Town helping them to reach the summit of the table at this very early stage. Jamie Jordan was the star for Westbury on his 50th appearance for the club, laying on an assist for Ricky Hulbert’s 16th minute opener, before he added some gloss to the scoreline by adding a goal of his own late in the piece. At Weymouth Street, Warminster Town’s perfect start continued, with Jack Miluk and Lewis Graham each scoring doubles in their 4-0 win over Malmesbury Victoria. In the game of the day, Bristol Telephones defeated Calne Town 3-2 despite going behind on two occasions.