Heys wrap up League campaign with REMYCA draw
Alex Brotherton reports
Match sponsored by Rick and Stef Barrett
On bank holiday Monday Heys played out a hard fought 1-1 draw with Litherland REMYCA at a sun-soaked Adie Moran Park.
As the temperatures soared on the hottest May bank holiday on record, both teams defied the heat, with the help of some water breaks, to produce an entertaining last game of the season encounter.
With Heys already assured a third place finish, Jon Lyons rang the changes with an eye to Wednesday’s LWC Drinks Cup Final and the playoff Semi Final on Saturday.
For much of the opening period Heys dominated, both possession and chances, but couldn’t find a way though.
Striker John Main was twice thwarted early on, as he saw an attempt cleared off the line before the REMYCA keeper made a fine save low down.
Ashley Stott then saw his shot pushed wide, before the referee called a drinks break.
After the stoppage Litherland seemed to take control while Heys took their foot of the gas.
In the space of a few minutes, Billington headed over for the visitors, before McDonald saw his ambitious long range volley fall just wide of the mark.
And it was the visitors who saw their efforts rewarded on the stroke of half time.
Collecting the ball out wide, Colin Quirk, who proved a handful for the Heys defence, sent an in swinging cross into the Heys box. The teasing ball eluded everyone, nestling inside Michael Smith’s left hand post.
With little to choose between the two sides, Heys remained upbeat and shortly after half time drew level.
As Anthony Hall’s cross looked to be heading out of play, Ashley Stott superbly controlled and teed up John Main who rifled the ball home past the helpless keeper.
The game remained even, with both sides exchanging chances. Michael Smith, named NWCFL Division One goalkeeper of the month before kick-off, saved well to deny Quirk a second, while at the other end Main was again thwarted by the legs of Litherland keeper Morrow.
A moment of controversy erupted with 5 minutes left to play, as Sven Gibson swiftly halted a Litherland counter attack. The visitors called for a red card for a professional foul, but the card the referee produced was yellow.
In the final moments Quirk spurned a chance to snatch a victory for the visitors, the score line staying at 1-1 until the final whistle.
The result, although meaningless standings-wise for Heys, will give Jon Lyons’ team confidence heading into the playoffs, having lost two of their previous three fixtures.
Unfortunately for Litherland the result was not enough to crown them league champions, as Silsden’s 5-0 thrashing of Old Holker meant that REMYCA would have to settle for runners-up.
Still, automatic promotion is a huge achievement, so a big congratulations is in order for the Sefton based club.
The season is far from over for Heys however, with the small matters of a cup final and promotion playoffs to deal with.
Heys’ next home fixture is a big one; the Playoff Semi Final vs Cammell Laird. With a 3pm kick off on Saturday May 12th, it’s the perfect opportunity for the people of Prestwich to get down to Adie Moran Park and support the promotion push. The lads need you more than ever!
Team: Michael Smith, Darius Photiou, Daniel Vincent, Shaun Johnson (CAPT), Sven Gibson, Jacob Holt, Anthony Hall, John Main, Ashley Stott, Chris Baguley, Rio Wilson-Heyes
Subs: Jamie Baguley (for Anthony Hall, 60 mins), Michael Itela (for Ashley Stott, 70 mins), Lee Bruce (for Darius Photiou, 75 mins), Mark Baguley