Ashbourne Aztecs U13 1, St George’s U13 1
ASHBOURNE Aztecs under-13s grabbed a last-gasp equaliser as their opening game of the season ended in a 1-1 draw against St George’s.
The game began with Aztecs controlling the play and pressing forward, creating the better chances.
The front pair of Bond and Collins were working hard, putting the opposition’s defence under pressure.
Chances for both teams were few but Aztecs had the slight edge.
Bacon in goal made a very good save on the stroke off half time, diving bravely at the feet of the attacker.
The second half began with the midfield of Moss, Haswell and the Gerrard twins working hard.
There was still not a lot of difference between the two teams but St George’s managed to create a good shooting chance on the edge of the box, and though Bacon saved well, the ball fell to the feet of an attacker, who slotted it home.
With the game still end to end and a few slight changes in positions made, Aztecs began to put St Georges under pressure in the last 10 minutes.
Finally it paid off, the ball falling to Bond, who drove it into the box and fired a low shot at the near post, which was deflected into the goal with only seconds left on the clock.
AZTECS: Bacon, Ainsworth, Elliott, Kelly, Thompson, Haswell, M Gerrard, A Gerrard, Moss, Collins, Bond and Pattinson.
Ashbourne Aztecs U14 4, Rocester U14 3
ASHBOURNE Aztecs under-14s kicked off their season with victory over Rocester, but a single goal difference shows how closely the competition is matched this year.
Rocester scored two early goals within seven minutes of kick off, but from then on, Ashbourne began to dominate, Tom Hodkinson’s shots going just wide or hitting the woodwork.
Perseverance and good runs along the wings from Richard Rosewarne and Harry Zona resulted in the latter scoring the first goal for Ashbourne.
Rocester came back and went into half-time leading 3-1 after a penalty was awarded in their favour, and although Jordan Burton dived the right way, it was just out of this reach.
Will Farr and Stoch played well in the middle of the pitch and with the addition of Will Campbell on the wing, where Oliver Reed had started to tire, Ashbourne were on the way back.
Hodkinson scored twice to bring the scores level and it was Rosewarne’s goal, which lobbed the keeper, that took the home team ahead.
It was then a case of hanging on until full time.
Kaylem Ocran was the final substitute for Aztecs to be brought on, and a gritty performance from the team saw them dig deep to open the season with a win.
Ashbourne Aztecs U12 3, Duffield Dynamos U12 1
ASHBOURNE Aztecs under-12s started the new season brightly with a narrow win over Duffield.
Many chances were created and narrowly missed by Joe Reed, Ben Wainwright, Kye Gordon, Jack Bill, Luis Zambrano and new signing Tim Lueer until a well rehearsed corner routine was volleyed home by Lueer.
Aztecs continued to play some attractive football as did a well-organised Duffield team.
Substitutes Adam Wildgoose and another new signing Connor Mcabe came on and added to the attacking threat, but despite several great chances the second goal would not come.
Duffield attacked and a foul by Jake Ridley led to a free kick on the edge of the box, a great strike over the wall gave keeper Lee Cranstone no chance.
The Aztecs continued to play their football and a great strike from Joe Reed made it 2-1.
From the kick-off, captain Liam Warner intercepted a pass and ran half the length of the pitch and played the perfect pass to Ben Wainwright, who finished clinically.
There was still time for Joe Reed to shake the bar and unluckily hit one of his own players on the line.
Chellaston BS U10 2, Ashbourne Aztecs Tigers U10 1
ASHBOURNE Aztecs Tigers under-10s suffered a narrow defeat at Chellaston Black Sox in their opening game of the new season.
Tigers made a bright start to the match with Mathew Jones testing the keeper within the first minute.
However Black Sox came back with an immediate response with Tom Breen having to save well when left one on one.
New signing Alex Holt had a couple of shots that just went wide and Will Griffiths forced a fingertip save.
In the second half, Matthew Staniforth played in Will Griffiths, who hit a long low shot that clipped the inside of the post and went in.
Chllaston hit back and Tom Breen found himself one on one with a Black Sox forward, who clipped the ball under his diving body.
As Tigers pushed forward for the winner, Breen found himself with two Black Sox players descending on his goal and even his brave efforts could not stop them scoring the decisive goal.
Ashbourne Aztecs U15 1, Spondon Dynamos 5
ASHBOURNE Aztecs under-15s started the new campaign with a 5–1 home defeat against Spondon Dynamos.
The opening exchanges were even as both teams tried to get the ball down and play their natural passing game.
Josh Dutton, Ross Keeling and Liam Scott started brightly in the central area and goalkeeping captain Billy Owens marshalled the defence well.
But it was the visitors who took control of the game after 15 minutes with two goals in quick succession.
First, Ashbourne failed to pick up the central midfield runner and then the opposition were quicker to the second ball following a long free-kick.
The Spondon midfield were beginning to impose themselves, being sharper in the tackle and using their wide players effectively.
Full backs Lewis Pepper and Josh Bailey stuck to their task, but the pace and crossing of the wingers was creating pressure on the whole defence, while Billy Owens had to field several shots, tipping one over the bar.
Charles Owens worked hard to close down the Spondon back four and tried to create openings for Matt Griffiths and Jack Dean on the flanks, but attacking opportunities were rare throughout.
The away side converted their third goal before the break, when Aztecs again failed to deal with a set piece.
The second half saw a much more committed performance from everyone.
Joe Barke and Bart Banks were introduced in midfield and they worked hard in defence and attack, creating the first shooting chances for Charles Owens.
Will MacDonald-Lowe was also effective at right back with his close marking and stemming the flow of crosses.
Ben Wildgoose also played well, supporting Dutton and Scott in breaking up the fluency of the Spondon midfield.
Just when Aztecs were getting back into the match, a mix up between Dan Lee and his goalkeeper led to the Spondon striker clipping the ball into the net.
Two lovely passing moves on the left involving Dean, Griffiths, Dutton and Banks saw Charles Owens clean through on two occasions but the centre-half and then the goalkeeper thwarted him.
Spondon then hit Aztecs on the break with a pass which split the defence and was blasted home to make it 5-0.
With five minutes remaining, the hosts got a deserved reward when Dutton steered a long chipped shot over the advancing keeper.
AZTECS: B Owens, Bailey, Pepper, Lee, Major, Dean, Scott, Dutton, Keeling ,Griffiths, Banks, C Owens, Wildgoose, Barke, MacDonald-Lowe.
Cobra Oakwood U11 1, Ashbourne Aztecs U11 6
ASHBOURNE Aztecs under-11s Juniors took to life as a nine-a-side team like a duck to water as they smashed hosts Cobra Oakwood 6-1 in their first game of the season.
The Cobras started the stronger of the two sides, going one goal up within minutes of kick off, and it was midway through the first half before birthday boy Luke Zona replied for Ashbourne, followed in quick succession by a second goal.
James Donlan was working really hard feeding the balls through for the strikers but it was defender George Martin who scored the third with a cracking shot from the wing which bobbled on the line.
Jack Beresford, making his debut, gave extra pace up front where needed, but the fourth goal of the game and Zona’s hat trick came from the back of the field.
Ben Johnson started the move with a great goal kick and with neat play between his fellow team mates, the ball was guided down the pitch and into the net.
The fifth goal belonged to Tyler Burton, who fired home a cracker.
Calum Wood had a good run down the wing in the second but after striding the length of the pitch, hadn’t quite got enough strength in his final shot to score another goal for the team.
Towards the end of the second half, Adam Leigh began pushing forward, wanting a bit of the action and put in some excellent crosses from the wings.
Josh Lee stood solid in defence as other defenders moved forward and put in some valuable stops, shielding balls in the closing stages.
The scoring was complete when Zona, not content with a hat-trick fired home a fourth to put the game to bed.
Ashbourne Aztecs Leopards U11 11, Gad Khalsa 3
ASHBOURNE Aztecs Leopards under-11s started the season in swashbuckling style with a rout of Gad Khalsa.
Adapting well to the new nine-a-side format, the Leopards kicked off playing up the slope and made a confident start.
They soon broke the deadlock as they pushed forward and the ball was picked up by Leo Cooper, who scored with a left-foot shot into the bottom corner from just inside the area.
Shortly afterwards, Leopards attacked again and Taylor Platt passed the ball through to Alex Cheetham, who shot past the keeper.
Leopards were cruising at this point but Gad Khalsa managed to get forward themselves and quickly got two goals back to level the match.
Aztecs were playing well and they soon regained the lead through Taylor Platt with a great finish to make it 3-2.
Then, from a Leopards corner hit towards the near post, the defender and goalkeeper failed to clear the ball and Platt got the last touch for the fourth goal.
The defensive duo of Tommy Cokayne and Will Birkett were getting to grips with the new offside laws and were tackling well to halt any Gad Khalsa attacks, while Aaron Kingaby in goal was settling into the game with some safe handling.
Leopards were looking more confident now and Cheetham made a run through the middle to score with an excellent finish into the roof of the net.
Gad Khalsa then scored their third goal after a great counter-attacking move but Aztecs restored the three-goal cushion as a Bradley Pegg shot hit the crossbar and Cooper was on hand to tap in from close range.
The Leopards’ seventh goal came just before half time as Ben Pattinson broke from midfield and scored with a strong shot past the keeper.
The Ashbourne side started the second half brightly and now had advantage of playing down the slope.
They were putting Gad Khalsa under severe pressure with several testing crosses into penalty box and Cooper had time tap home from one of these.
The next goal came from Taylor Platt, who blocked a Gad Khalsa goal kick and put his shot past the stranded keeper.
Leopards were not finished with their scoring, and after a great cross from Cheetham, the ball was side-footed into the net by Sam Glossop.
The final goal of a very entertaining match came from Ben Pattinson, who scored with another strong shot.
AZTECS: Kingaby, Cokayne, Birkett, Cooper, Pattinson, Glossop, Cheetham, Platt, Harris, Pegg, Mee.
Ashbourne Aztecs Diamonds U11 2, Mackworth St Francis U11 7
ASHBOURNE Aztecs Diamonds under-11s’ season got off to a poor start as they conceded seven goals in defeat to Mackworth St Francis Panthers.
A sunny morning greeted the Diamonds for the first match of the campaign, but metaphorical black clouds loomed after a first minute goal by the Panthers.
Strong attacks by the Panthers’ well disciplined team saw goalkeeper Jack Banks sweat to earn his keep and hard work was needed from defenders Regan Ford, Conor Phillips and Kian Tunnicliffe.
A second goal was taken by the Panthers after a hard run through the Diamonds midfield and defence.
A precise pass from midfielder Nathan Munro saw Harry Vinall attempt a run towards the Panthers area but this was stopped short.
A corner awarded to the Panthers saw a third goal followed shortly by a fourth after some great passes.
A firm cross from Jacob Wibberley- Howe found Theo Rodgers, who made a valliant attempt to break through the opposition’s defence, but was stopped by the keeper.
Several Panther attacks followed with Max Bishop and Thomas Barke clearing them from midfield and several on target shots were saved by Banks, but the sheer tenacity of the Panthers wore through Diamonds defence and a fifth goal was taken.
A long pass from Banks found Eric Prince’s feet and a glimmer of a goal seemed on the horizon but again this was stopped by the Panthers’ keeper.
An early second half strike was attempted by the Panthers and deftly stopped by Banks, followed by another attempt which found its mark and earned a sixth goal followed swiftly by a seventh.
A firm cross from Phillips to Rogers then found Vinall, whose shot went wide of the goal, before a cross by Vinall saw Rodgers off on a full pitch run through the Panthers defence and a hard shot found the back of the net to secure the first Diamonds goal of the season.
The Panthers retaliated by working Banks and the defence hard again and a clearance by Ford found Vinall, who took the ball into the opposition’s area and attempted a shot which lacked power and was caught by the keeper.
Following a good precise pass from Bishop to Rodgers the ball was ran down the field and crossed to Vinall, who powered a shot into the back of the Panthers net to take the Diamonds second goal and the last of the match.
ADASC Harriers U16 5, Ashbourne Aztecs U16 1
ASHBOURNE Aztecs under-16s suffered a heavy defeat to ADASC HArriers in their opening match of the new season.
Play started evenly, with both sides passing well and creating a few shots on goal, and the home side opened the scoring with a 15-yard shot that beat keeper Owen Ryan.
Five minutes later Max Wainwright levelled with a superb shot from 25 yards into the top corner, giving the keeper no chance to save it.
Again play was even with both sides creating chances and the keepers making good saves, but as Aztecs pushed forward, Harriers broke quickly and a through ball set the striker up on goal.
With the keeper coming out he managed to smack the ball into the corner of the net for the second goal.
From a corner a goal-bound header looked a sure goal until Ryan dived backwards, scooping it over the bar to safety and keeping the score 2-1 at the break.
With little to divide the teams on possession or commitment, Aztecs were confident that they could get something out of the game, but again pushing forward they were caught on the break and Harriers added another.
Aztecs did create a number of decent chances but they shot wide or were saved, and from a goalmouth scramble Harriers added another, but still Aztecs pushed forward looking for a goal.
Harriers added another right at the end to run out 5-1 winners, but though the score looks grim there was little between the sides.
AZTECS: Ryan, Coats, Evans, Bond, Berrisford, McHugh, Wainwright, Laurie, Frazer-Smith, Partridge, Sanders, Leason, Saddler.
MAYFIELD Panthers under-12s have undergone a highly successful round of pre-season training and friendly matches before they kick off in Burton Junior Football League Division One this Sunday.
Their friendly games have brought them a 1-0 away win at Buxton Spartans, a 3-2 win at Hatton, and a 2-0 home victory over Uttoxeter Blacks.
A game against Mayfield under-13s ended in a 3-3 draw.
The players have been together since their under-8 days, and under the tuition of manager Roger Wallis and coach Sam Howard have made great progress.
For this season they have signed a new player in Mason Smith, and have re-signed Charlie Land, who is allowed to play one season despite being a year younger.
Both have settled in well and played prominently in pre-season fixtures.
The team begin their league season on Sunday at Shobnall Leisure Centre with a 2pm kick-off against Stretton.
Panthers full squad: Oliver Greatrex, Matthew Meakin, Louis Birch, Owen Pugh, Matthew Wallis, Ryan Pickering, Ben Robson, Matthew Moody, Sam White, Charlie Land, Jack Edge, Mason Smith, Harry Breeze and Kieran Richardson.