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Monday 17 December 2018

Lively Celtic hold Rangers to a draw

Action resumes after festive break

James Lawless (Moyne Rangers) tries to break away from Jamie Hudson (New Ross Celtic) in their Under-13 encounter
James Lawless (Moyne Rangers) tries to break away from Jamie Hudson (New Ross Celtic) in their Under-13 encounter
Dylan Lennon of New Ross Celtic under pressure from Kyle Delaney (Moyne Rangers) in their drawn Under-13 league encounter

The Wexford and District Schoolboys soccer league returned after the Christmas break on Saturday, with the majority of the fixture list surviving the rain and heavy pitches. It was the turn of the odd age groups and there was plenty excitement to be found around the county.

The last remaining perfect records in Under-13 Division 1 were spoiled by tenacious opponents looking to stake their own claims for a late-season charge. In our focus game, New Ross Celtic were superb when holding Moyne Rangers to a draw.

The Enniscorthy town side remain three points behind league leaders Gorey Rangers with a game in hand. The Ramstown club boasted three wins from three games going into the weekend but a lively Forth Celtic kept their title hopes in their own hands with a creditable 2-2 draw.

Blackwater joined Glynn Barntown at the top of the Division 1A table but were made to settle for a draw with North End in Drinagh. The visitors came into the game a point off the top but Glynn Barntown's entertaining 6-4 defeat at home to Fastnet Rovers really tightened up the league.

Wexford Albion, whose game at home to Courtown Hibs fell foul of the weather, are the side to watch out for in this division. Having played just three games, four less than the joint table-toppers, they are just four points behind and ready to pounce.

Bunclody moved into a three-point lead at the midway point in their Division 2 campaign after seeing off St. Cormac's. They lead Oylegate, who were inactive at the weekend, with the rest piled up behind.

Leading the charge and not to be written off are Rosslare Rangers after they smashed seven past Shamrock Rovers down in the Harbour. It was also a great weekend for last year's cup winners, Curracloe United, as they picked up their first win of the league season.

Cloughbawn were in a position to start thinking about glory in Division 2A, had they got the better of Shelburne on Saturday. However, the Ballywilliam boys are made of stern stuff and they put everything back in the balance with a 3-2 win. Corach Ramblers, in second spot, had their game with Ballymurn postponed.

Leaders New Ross Town 'B' saw their game with Gorey Rangers 'B' called off in Division 3 and their nine-point lead was subsequently trimmed to six by Gorey Celtic 'B' after the Umbro Park club were awarded the game against short-handed Camolin Celtic.

Rathnure inched closer to the finish line in Division 3A with a hard-earned 2-1 victory at home to Forth Celtic 'B'. Kilmore won't throw in the towel just yet, which they proved with a 1-0 win away to Bree. Tombrack also kept their hopes alive by easing past Cushinstown.

Lastly in the Under-13 age-group, the status quo continued in Division 4 where Ballagh United dismissed Stoney Rovers to remain six points clear. Nearest rivals, Campile United, also won and have two games in hand so there's a long way to go to find a champion.

The Under-15 Cup threw up a repeat of last season's Under-14 final and history repeated itself as St. Joseph's edged North End United 2-1 to book their place in the second round opposite Rosslare Strand. The seasiders won through to the last 16 with a 2-0 win at home to Ferns.

The slight shock of the four games played was Gorey Celtic making the long journey to Duncannon and coming away with a 2-0 win to set up a round two tie with Enniscorthy Town. Elsewhere, New Ross Celtic will travel to Shamrock Rovers in the next round after they overcame Corach Ramblers.

The game between joint league leaders Enniscorthy Town and fifth-placed Gorey Rangers fell foul of the weather in Division 1. However, Wexford Celtic took advantage of their chance in Division 1A by beating St. Cormac's 3-0 to leapfrog Gorey Celtic and St. Leonards into top spot.

There's a long way to go in seven-team Division 2 but Shamrock Rovers did their chances no harm with a big win against Bree. It was enough to send them above Corach Ramblers and within three points of leaders Rosslare Strand, both of whom were in cup action at the weekend.

Alternately, it's getting late early in Division 2A. The top two both won at the weekend, as leaders Kilmore beat Newpark 3-0 and Bunclody edged Moyne Rangers 1-0. Six points currently separate the sides and both have three games to play, meaning that should Kilmore better Bunclody's result next time out they will be champions.

Finally, it was a great week for Gorey in Division 3. Celtic 'B' moved into second place with a 3-2 home win against Glynn Barntown. It was even better for Rangers 'B' who are now six points clear with a game in hand after they beat Taghmon.

REQUEST: Clubs are asked to submit details of their scorers in all divisions to Dean Goodison as soon as possible after matches.

Please text the information to 087-9060630, or send an e-mail to deangoodison@hotmail.com

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