Supersub Sam keeps Magpies flying high
Ridgeons League: Substitute Sam Willis scored with his first touch to hand Dereham victory over Wisbech and ensure the Magpies end the year in the top five.The first half was goalless, although Dereham felt they should have had a penalty when Robbie Harris was upended in the area.
Substitute Sam Willis scored with his first touch to hand Dereham victory over Wisbech and ensure the Magpies end the year in the top five.
The first half was goalless, although Dereham felt they should have had a penalty when Robbie Harris was upended in the area. The referee thought differently, however, and booked Harris for diving.
It was left to Willis to make the crucial breakthrough in the 71st minute, as he netted from close range following Harris' perfect cross.
Dereham's Brendan Foley had an effort cleared off the line in the closing stages, but the Magpies had already done enough to claim the three points.
Andy Key struck twice as Wroxham rounded off the year in style with a 3-0 win at Stanway.
Key opened the scoring on 20 minutes after good work from Gary Gilmore and the scorer then had the chance to double his tally with a penalty just before the break. But he drove his spot kick within easy reach of the Stanway keeper, who palmed the ball out.
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Key made amends in the 59th minute when he rammed the ball home from seven yards out to make it 2-0.
Wroxham completed the scoring in the 70th minute when Ben Thompson netted.
With leaders Needham Market and second-placed Soham also winning, Wroxham remain in third place.
Kirkley & Pakefield were unable to build on their Boxing Day derby win over Lowestoft as they slipped to a 1-0 defeat at home to Haverhill.
The hosts should have taken the lead in the first half when they were awarded a penalty following a handball, but Danny Stokeld's spot-kick was saved by the keeper.
Haverhill's Nick Impey made them pay for that miss with the only goal of the game towards the end of the first period.
Norwich United picked up a 1-0 victory at home to Leiston.
The opening 45 minutes was goalless, but the Planters scored the crucial goal just two minutes after the break. Francis Kumbur found himself in a shooting position, but unselfishly laid the ball off to Nicki Young, whose curling effort found the net.
Swaffham increased the gap between themselves and the bottom three with an excellent 2-1 success at Woodbridge.
In the First Division, Diss avenged their shock defeat to Cornard earlier this season with a 6-0 thrashing of the strugglers.
Danny Partridge headed Diss in front after just five minutes and Gavin Norman doubled the advantage midway through the first half.
Dale Vince made it 3-0 from the penalty spot after a Cornard player was penalised for pulling Norman's shirt.
Partridge headed his second on 58 minutes and immediately afterwards Norman fired home the fifth from the edge of the area.
Steve Best then completed the rout three minutes from time.
Downham's promotion hopes suffered a jolt as they lost 2-0 at home to Saffron Walden and Thetford also suffered a home defeat, 2-1 against Hadleigh, Luke Catchpole netting for Thetford.
Yarmouth came from a goal down to take a 1-1 draw at home to Whitton, Nick Crawley bagging the equaliser in the 75th minute.
And there was a rare point for Fakenham as they took a surprise 2-2 draw from their trip to Debenham.