Swans stay determined to finish on high

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NEWPORT Pagnell suffered a bit of a hangover from their recent title chasing exploits on Saturday when they fell 3-0 at Stewarts & Lloyds Corby, but they bounced back on Tuesday night to thump Cogenhoe United 6-0.

Defeat at Corby was the Swans’ third in a row and came after they lost to Kings Lynn and St Neots Town who will now battle it out for the United Counties League Premier Division title.

But despite being ruled out of the chase, Terry Shrieves’ men did what they do best at Willen Road on Tuesday night as they bounced back in style to thrash struggling Cogenhoe 6-0.

It took just five minutes for Darren Lynch to open the Swans’ account, before three quick fire goals sealed the hosts’ success.

John Thorpe scored their 24th minute second and Luigi Rocco made it 3-0 two minutes later.

Lynch scored his second after 27 minutes and Vinny Shrieves joined the spree 10 minutes into the second period. And there was still time for the league’s leading scorer Daren Dykes to complete the scoring in the 86th minute from the penalty spot.

That win came three days after Newport had crashed 3-0 at Corby who eventually won comfortably in a game delayed following an injury to referee Mark Connolly.

Lee Genner gave the home side the lead three minutes in, turning to half volley the opener. Shrieves went closest for the visitors but in truth they were sluggish and never really got going.

Michael Byrne doubled S&L’s advantage before Callum Noble rounded off the scoring in the last minute as the Swans failed to score for the first time in eight games.

Long Buckby look like the only side who could prevent the Swans for a very creditable third place finish and could move to within a point of them if they take three points at Yaxley on Saturday as Shrieves’ side have a day off.

Next up for Newport is a game at home to Peterborough North Star - the side who beat them in the quarter final of the League Cup earlier this month to trigger the start of the Swans’ poor run which eventually saw them ruled out of the title chase.

But instead of revenge against Star, it’s the Berks and Bucks FA Senior Trophy final that will be on the club’s mind. They booked their place in the final with a 2-1 win over Wantage Town and face Flackwell Heath at Aylesbury FC on April 12 in the defence of their trophy.

The Swans took the lead in the semi against Wantage through a Jordon Spruce free-kick, although it wasn’t all plain sailing as Neil Hodgkins levelled for Wantage on the half hour mark, holding off two challenges before firing low beyond keeper Liam Smyth.

However, Newport won it when Lynch headed in another Spruce free-kick three minutes from half time, sealing his side’s place in a fourth successive Berks & Bucks final.

Olney Town return to Division One action on Saturday as they entertain Northampton Rangers at East Street. After sitting out last weekend’s round of fixtures the Nurserymen find themselves now 10 points behind Kempston Rovers at the top, and will have to go some to catch them or even Thrapston Town or Bugbrooke St Michaels in between.

NEW Bradwell St Peter are looking good for a solid mid-table finish in South Midlands League Division One, but were left disappointed at being held to a 2-2 draw at home to lowly Amersham Town.

Nicholls and Ward found the net for Peters but it wasn’t enough to give them the points against a side sitting second from bottom of the table. A win for Peters would have done neighbours Stony Stratford Town a huge favour, but their 3-1 home defeat by Cranfield United has left them with a mountain to climb to avoid finishing bottom.

In Division Two Old Bradwell had a 1-1 draw at Aston Clinton, while it was a do-or-die weekend for lowly MK Wanderers who had to record a win over rivals Bletchley to have a chance of moving off the foot of the table - but Bletchley won 7-0.

MK TITANS and Wolverton look set to clash to try and avoid finishing at the bottom of the Premier Division, but it’s Wolves who have the edge.

Both sides lost again on Saturday, with Titans going down 6-1 at Yardley Gobion and Wolves - who have two games in hand - beaten 3-2 away at Loughton Manor.

MK Titans’ Reserves aren’t doing a lot better in the Intermediate Division as they sit second from bottom after sharing a 1-1 draw with Denbigh Hall who stay half way up. Syresham held leaders MK Wanderers to a 2-2 draw while Great Linford beat Brackley 2-1.

In Division One Celtic MK enjoyed a 2-0 win at Bletchley Bridge and it was a classic at Old Stratford where the hosts lost 4-2 to Woughton.

United MK were the big winners in Division Two, beating Yardley Res 5-0.