POSTED: January 11 2023 22:18:39. By Keith Long - Junior Section Match Details 7th/8th January 2023

Following the Christmas and New Year break the lengthy spell of wet weather forced the postponement of several fixtures in the Junior Section and only eight games went ahead on the first full weekend of 2023.

*Away for their first game of the new year in the Bolton Bury and District League the Under 17's Storm travelled to play Be The Change Youth. In very wet conditions Storm went a goal down but quickly equalised when a free kick by Ben Delaney was too hot for the hosts keeper to deal with. After getting a tighter grip on this Section B contest Beechy eventually took the lead just before half time after Luka Ottiwell controlled a through ball then rounded the keeper for an easy finish.

In the second half Be The Change fought back and after missing several chances equalised following a qick counter-attack. The hosts then added three more goals and forced several good saves from Storm's goalkeeper Lewis Wallis but Beechy reduced the arrears through Evan Hodson-Griffiths who scored his twenty first goal of the season. Storm who lost this match 5-3 have a tough home game on Saturday 14th January against Winton Wanderers and Beechy must secure the three points to keep them in with a chance of the league title.

*The Under 16's Typhoon who were at home to Atherton and Tyldesley Dragons welcomed back Will Bentham for his first start of an injury hit campaign and it only took Will a couple of minutes to rediscover his goalscoring ability when he gave Beechy the lead. Creating loads of chances the Typhoon boys got into good positions but often made the wrong decision and wasted the opportunity to go 2-0 up. Atherton and Tyldesley responed with an equalising goal though Beechy put the pressure back onto their opponents and thanks to a spectacular finish from Reece James Typhoon held the lead at half time. In the second half tiredness crept into the Beechy team and this allowed the visitors to score a late equaliser then two more goals for Astley and Tyldesley left Beechy with no time to try and force at least a draw. Typhoon's Man of the Match was Liam Peers.

*In difficult conditions Beechy Under 12's Storm (9v9) played out an entertaining 2-2 draw at home with De La Salle Reds. Displaying real character the Beechy players braved the elements and despite creating most of the chances in the first half shared a 0-0 scoreline at the break. Within ten minutes of the second half Storm suddenly found themselves 2-0 down and as Beechy fought back chance after chance went begging. But following a goalmouth scramble Mikel Omatyo was on target when he reduced the arrears giving Storm the impetus they needed. Mikel scored Beechy's equalising goal via a header to earn Beechy a fully deserved point from this Salford and District League Division 1 fixture.

*On the Astroturf Pitch at Moorside High School the Under 10's Tornadoes were in action against Moorside Rangers Yellows. Showing no signs of rustiness after a four week lay off the Tornadoes made a good start and took an early lead with a nice backheel finish from Jack Hoatson. Rangers bounced back and following four long range strikes which gave Beechy's keeper no chance Moorside held a comfortable half time lead. Producing a positive response in the second half the Tornadoes were rewarded with three goals to get back on level terms. Beechy keeper Harvey Pugh pulled off some great saves but in the last few minutes after a long kick from their goalie Rangers got their match winning goal. Tornadoes goalscorers were Jack Hoatson and River Langford with two goals each while Beechy's Man of the Match award was shared between Harvey Pugh and Jack Hoatson.

*Also playing for the first time in four weeks were the Under 8's Storm who had a Sunday fixture against Manchester Maccabi Rangers. This was officially Beechy's home game but due to a waterlogged pitch the match was switched to Maccabi's all weather pitch. Playing in the top Division Strom knew they faced a tough game but Beechy started well and created a couple of decent chances. Against the run of play Storm conceded the opening goal from a corner but thanks to a positive response Beechy scored two goals in quick fire time. Storm were much the better team but gave away some cheap goals possdibly due to the lack of match practice but Beechy were eventual winners of the game which produced fourteen goals. Goals by Oscar Pugh, Seth Barber, Alfie Heighway plus two own goals secured Storm the victory. Man of the Match went to Oscar Berry for his fine goalkeeping performance in the second half.

*Making a perfect start to 2023 were the Under 8's Thunder who beat Ordsall Raptors on a muddy pitch at Beech Farm. Making a quick start and showing no signs of rustiness Thunder took the lead after Brayden Taylor regained possession and moved the ball onto Harley Cosgrove-Newby who ran half the length of the pitch before slotting the ball home for a well taken goal. Brayden Taylor got in on the act with a top-class goal then following a goalmouth scramble Brayden was on target again before he scored his first Beechy hat-trick via a thunderbolt free kick into the top corner of the net. Beechy held a four goal lead at half time then Sonny Phillips who had produced some brilliant defending completed the scoring with a fine solo effort as Thunder started the New Year on the right foot. Brayden Taylor was named Man of the Match but praise for Harley Cosgrove-Newby who linked up superbly with Brayden throughout the game.

*Beechy Under 7's Thunder faced tough home game against Winton Hawks at a rain soaked Beech Farm Playing Fields. This was Thunder's first fixture after they were placed in the top tiered group for the rest of the season. Beechy made the worst possible start in the game when they conceded three goals within the opening ten minutes and playing one of the best teams in the league the fear was that heads would drop. But this wasn't the case and following a reshuffle with Beechy players in unfamilar positions a great game of football developed. Harrison Spencer reduced the arrears from a free kick just before half time and for most of the second half Thunder had Winton Hawks pinned in their own half with goalmouth scrambles and great goalkeeping denying Beechy further goals. Any chance of a Beechy comeback faded when the Hawks added a fourth goal following a corner near the end. Special mentions to Man of the Match Grayson Owen who is gradually becoming the rock of Thunder's defence and goalkeeper Oscar Spencer who's unbelievable point blank save earned generous applause from both teams.

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