With the weekend’s heavy rain disrupting a huge chunk of the weekend’s fixture list, few local sides saw league action. Mountmellick United’s trip to Birr Town was one of many to fall foul to the weather, leaving only Arlington to represent the area in the top flight. Unfortunately for the Port men, they faced a difficult trip to title-chasing Mullingar Athletic and in a one-sided affair, it was the Westmeath men who controlled the tie and easily disposed of Arlington on a 5-0 scoreline.
Having coped well with some of the bigger names in the top-flight, the heavy reverse was a disappointing set-back for Richie Confrey’s outfit. They will look to regroup when they make the short trip to Mountmellick this coming Sunday, and after been outclassed by United at the start of the season, Arlington will hope that they can fare out better in Conor Davis Park. Mountmellick put six past the Portarlington men back in August and Arlington will need everything to go their way if they are to come away with something from this eagerly anticipated local derby.
None of the four Premier Division fixtures went ahead, meaning that Clonaslee’s home tie against title-chasing Gallen Utd and Rosenallis’ trip to Willow Park will have to wait for another day. Rosenallis will have to undertake another trip to Westmeath however when they head north to meet Mullingar Town. Although Rosenallis currently lie four points behind Town in the table, they do have a couple of games in hand over them, and a win would boost their hopes of reviving their stop-start season. Clonaslee are idle this weekend having played more games than any other side in the division, which makes their position at the foot of the table all the more precarious.
It was good news in Division 1 however as Abbeyleix Athletic maintained pole position in Division 1 with a 2-0 home win over Clonmore Utd. Scott Conroy and Stephen Hawkins were the Athletic goalscorers, and although nearest rivals Tullamore Town also registered a win, looking extremely impressive in dispatching a decent Clonbonny side 5-0. Athletic will be hoping that neighbours Stradbally Town can do them a massive favour with Town hosting Tullamore this weekend, while Abbeyleix welcome St Peters B to Fr. Breen Park and the other Laois side in the division, Noreside Celtic head to Temple Villa.
In Division 2, the game of the day was Dynamo Town’s smashing 5-2 win over Gracefield. A James Ryan hat-trick was the difference as Liamie Marum’s men overcame the high-flying Portarlington men who passed up the chance to take top spot despite a bizarre goal direct from a kick out from Gracefield’s keeper John Knight. Eoghan Gleeson got Gracefield’s other goal but Ryan’s treble along with a brace from Tommy Scully was enough to nudge Dynamo up the table, level on points with Portlaoise and only four points behind league leaders Moate Celtic.
Gracefield will hope to get back on track when they head up the road to take on Ballybrittas. Dynamo head to Tullamore to meet Coolraine and Portlaoise face Gentex in Athlone who lost some ground at the weekend with a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Walsh Island Shamrocks.