The Blackpool and District Youth Football League finally beat the weather to stage a full fixture programme last weekend, when a handful of games in the Lancashire FA Cup involving BDYL teams also took place.
In the U13 competition, goals from Joshua Hampson and Jamie Elliot gave Poulton a 2-0 win against BJFF Blades and a place in the semi-finals.
A brace from Kian Makepeace also saw Thornton Cleveleys to the last four, beating Kirkham 2-0.
And in the U16 competition, Poulton went out 5-4 on penalties at the same stage, after drawing 0-0 with Charnock Richard.
Plenty of Hogan Cup ties were finally played and the first round of the U14 competition got under way.
Clifton beat Warton Typhoons Blues 15-0, with goals from Bradley Jones (2), Harry Cox (2), Denny Cain (2), Hayden Abreu (2), Sam Etchels, Jake Oldenthorpe, George Acton, Jack Doyle, Mitchel Law, Luke Parr and an own goal.
Ollie Tormey and Kane Thomas scored five apiece for Fleetwood Town in their 15-0 demolition of South Shore. Joseph Scantlebury (2), Dan Crewsden, Kurtis Tester and Owen Walmsley added the other five.
Two goals each from Alfie Malinder, Chris Walker, Hugo Stanfield and George McGrath helped Poulton Town to a 12-0 win against BJFF Vipers, Joe Warren-Plant, Harry Broughton and an own goal completing the scoring. Ben Churchouse was the stand-out player for Vipers.
The first round of the U15s Hogan Cup also took place and there were mixed emotions for the three Blackpool Rangers teams.
Revolution beat Fleetwood Gym 16-2 as Jordan Salthouse, Jack Park and Jake Dennehey all scored hat-tricks. Also on target were Oliver Purdon (2), James Lawrenson (2), Ciaran Kimmance (2) and Jake Brindle. Josh Coulter scored both Gym’s goals.
Rangers Tangerines side also had a comfortable win, beating Spirit of Youth 9-1 (see previous pages).
However, the Rangers U12 lost 5-1 to Kirkham Reds, for whom James Findlay (2), Will Critchley, Kieran Dawes and Dom Pendleton were on target. Jake Williams scored the consolation.
In the U16 Hogan Cup first round, there was a shock as three-times winners YMCA bowed at the first hurdle.
It was the first time in 10 years of competition that Blackpool Rangers have beaten YMCA ... and what a time to do it.
This game at the Bispham Gala Field was played on a very heavy and difficult pitch, and it was cup holders YMCA who made the early running.
However, the home side were first to test the keeper as Billy Crellin was forced into a diving save.
Bradley Jones was involved in many of YMCA’s attacks and Isaac Eastham burst through from midfield but curled his shot the wrong side of the upright as it remained 0-0 at the break. There were chances for both sides as the teams tired in the second half, YM hitting the bar.
In the dying seconds, Rangers’ Will Brown managed to keep his balance to shoot but he was denied by a brilliant save.
That meant penalties, with both sides scoring their first four only to miss the fifth.
Then James Tolley saved YM’s sixth penalty, Tom Miller stepped up to score and send Rangers through to the second round.
YMCA’s usual opponents in the final, Foxhall, also had a scare but managed to edge out Layton Blues with Connor Finlayson scoring the only goal.
Kirkham Juniors’ chances at AFC Blackpool weren’t helped when they started with only 10 players and had one sent off after 10 minutes.
Jack Eckman had given Kirkham the lead, tapping in after a mix-up defence, then AFC struggled to break down the nine men. They equalised with a shot from the edge of the area.
Injury reduced Kirkham to eight for a spell in the second half and they fell behind.
Sam Oldfield thought he had equalised but his header from Max Stothard’s free-kick was ruled out for offside.
Tom Rawcliffe too was denied an equaliser by a fine double save. Elliott Summerfield and Lee Casey were the scorers for AFC.
There was a 10-goal thriller between Clifton and St Annes, with the yellows just coming out on top 6-4 thanks to Liam Smith (2), Andy Drake, Dylan Jones, Kham Moreau and Luke Daniels. St Annes scorers were Ackrill(2), Baxter and Shaw.
Wyre beat Poulton Town 7-1 thanks to four goals from Alex Howarth and a hat-trick from Ollie Verity.
In the U12 Alpha League, Layton and Foxhall played out a 2-2 draw after two goals apiece by Conna Smith for Layton and Connor Satchell for the Hoops.
Two goals from Keaton Adams and a Nathan Murray strike gave St Annes a 3-1 win at Thornton Cleveleys Whites, for whom Ryan Beck scored.
Foxhall U13 took advantage of BJFF Blades’ cup involvement to go back to the top with a 10-1 win at Fleetwood Gym. Adam Rodgers, Brody Johnson and Jacob Stone-Grice led the way with two goals each, while Leo Walker, Rio Louth, Joshua Loan-Clarke and Jacob Leak also scored. Joshua Batchelor struck for Gym.
Clifton topped that with an 11-1 win over St Annes, featuring an Oliver Shaw hat-trick. Also on target for the winners were Ben Staveley (2), William Salanki, Jamie Benson-Brookfield, Jordan Heaton, Harry Shaw, Nathan Shaw and Bailey Blakeley. Adam Rae bagged the consolation.
One goal was enough for Foxhall Hoops against BJFF Vipers. Kaiden Shorrocks it and Nico Moreton Impressed for Vipers.
The only U14 Alpha game saw YMCA entertain BJFF Blues. The Blues keeper was in fine form as YMCA created early chances, and the visitors came more into the game to lead 3-0 at half-time with some clinical finishing.
YMCA showed their determination and pulled one back 10 minutes into the second half, when Adam Brooks made a determined run down the left and crossed low for Spencer Baxendale to drive home from 10 yards.
YMCA closed the gap further with an excellent finish from the impressive Finn Breakell. Both teams then fired efforts against the woodwork before YMCA equalised in the dying minutes.
From a short corner routine on the left, the ball was crossed in for Ruben Shaw to head powerfully into the roof of the net. Both teams are to be congratulated for their contributions to a highly entertaining and sporting game. Oliver Moran scored a brace and Louis Wilcox the other for the Blues, while Leon Bottomley was man of the match.
In the U14 Beta league, goals from Harrison Stott, Ethan McEvoy, Rob Baker and Sam Breeze gave Foxhall Hoops a 4-1 against Layton Blues, for whom Denes Ballo replied.
Kirkham Blues extended their lead at the top of the U15 Alpha League with a 7-2 win against BJFF Blades thanks to a Cian Menzies hat-trick, two from Connor Baxter and further goals from Luke Sevens and Joe Wyers-Roebuc. Luke Prior and Josh Rudge replied, while Josh Ainsworth was the Blades man of the match.
St Annes beat South Shore 2-0 in their first game since November.
The first half saw an abundance of chances go wide but St Annes led at the break through Rob Flanagan’s amazing 25-yard shot.
St Annes missed further chances in the second half before Dan Pilling unselfishly played in Tom Reardon, who smashed the ball home. Man of the match was Zac Leo.
In the U16 Beta league, Lytham Jaguars went up to third after goals from Dean Glover (2), Jack Webster, Callum Jones and Kieran Boyce sealed a 5-2 win at Layton Clarets, for whom George Young and Jack Taylor were on target.
Finally in the U18 competition, Matty Rhodes led the way with four goals as St Annes beat Spirit of Youth Blues 8-2. Oli Pitt scored two, Chris Fox and Kieran Howell the others, and Lewis Byrne and Josh Halstead replied.