With two games in #MatchweekTwentyTwo, ESPFA Derbyshire (Belper Town) had the opportunity to win the Midlands division but as true to form, the divisional winners will go down to the final game.
On Tuesday the Nailers made the short trip to Borrowash Victoria to take on ESPFA Derbyshire (Mickleover FC Red) knowing that a win would give them the opportunity to win the division in a do or die game on Thursday.
The visitors took the lead early on when a long free kick evaded everyone in the box with the ball falling to Jack Heath who tapped in from three yards.
Charlie Price, fresh from his hat-trick in his last game before Easter, equalised for the hosts when he fired home at the back post from a Dylan Samaringa cross.
The Red's took the lead soon after, when Oli Cass superbly fired in from 25 yards after a determined run and playing a sweet one-two.
If the Nailers were to get themselves back in the game, they would need Ewan Sutherill to be firing and once again that was the case, firstly calmly chipping the ball over the onrushing goalkeeper to bring the scores level and then just before half time he completed the turn around, slotting the ball away after finding himself free in the box after a deflected shot.
In the second half, Thomas Pegg extended the lead with a strike from outside the box before Corie Whitecross halved the deficit with a far post finish.
The game was put to bed when Charlie Waterfall headed in at the near post from a free kick to give the visitors the all important three points.
In the other game on the day, ESPFA Staffordshire (Stafford Town) travelled to ESPFA Cheshire (Witton Albion) looking for their first win in the group and got off to a fantastic start when Monty Tams and Jensen Chiu gave them an early two goal lead.
Midway through the first half the home side showed why they stormed to the North division title with three goals in reply to give them a half time lead thanks to goals from Isaac Shaw, Ioannis Koutouzos and Josh Butler.
Shaw scored another two to complete his hat-trick and a further strike from Owen Bird-Martin put the game beyond doubt.
ESPFA Derbyshire's (Belper Town) victory on Tuesday meant that a win over fellow divisional title rivals ESPFA West Midlands (Rushall Olympic Amber) would see them crowned winners, where as a win for the Walsall based side would see them battle it out with ESPFA Derbyshire (Mickleover FC Black) for the title. A draw would mean it would be between the two ESPFA Derbyshire sides.
The early advantage went to the Nailers through that man Sutherill again via the penalty spot after a handball in the box.
The visitors replied soon after when Jack McDermott struck from 25 yards to level the score.
In a tense game where both sides knew the stakes, there were plenty of chances at both ends but ultimately the rivals could not be separated and the draw means that ESPFA Derbyshire (Belper Town) move to 26 points and ESPFA West Midlands (Rushall Olympic Amber) to 24 points having played all their games and only a victory by seven goals or more in ESPFA Derbyshire (Mickleover FC Black)'s final game against ESPFA West Midlands (Rushall Olympic Black) next week will knock the Nailers off top spot at the final stage.
ESPFA West Yorkshire (Ossett United) secured their passage to the ESPFA Cup semi-finals with three points against ESPFA Greater Manchester (Mossley AFC)
The hosts took a two goal lead into the break thanks to Keel Del-Grande and an own goal and when Del-Grande got his second immediately after half time, the game looked to be out of reach for the Lillywhites but as shown so many times this season, they are a determined group of players and hit back with goals from Aladin Yasin and Adam Omakwu.
The Sheepicorns' held on for victory and top spot in the North East group and will now travel to ESPFA Lancashire (Skelmersdale United) on Thursday 4th May.
Adam Moseley is favourite for this seasons ESPFA golden boot and added another hat-trick to his tally in a comprehensive victory over ESPFA Staffordshire (Stafford Town).
He got his first at the half way point of the first half before Rhys James extended the lead just before half time. Lemar O'Connor kept the Reds in the game with a first half strike but two further goals in the second half from Moseley makes the Linnets favourites to finish runners up in the group as they did in the league.
In the final game of the day, ESPFA Nottinghamshire (Carlton Town) travelled to ESPFA Derbyshire (Mickleover FC Black) in their first game of the group and came away from the undefeated hosts with a tight 1-0 win thanks to a Tiago Mata first half goal.
The return fixture on Monday gives the Millers the opportunity to go level with the Derbyshire side at the top of the group with the advantage of having two games in hand.
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