Look out Coates - Oakham are on the charge and coming for the top spot. Oakham were not at their free-flowing best on Saturday but it mattered little as they came back to win 4-1 away at Deeping Rangers Reserves.
United have now won six games on the bounce in all competitions and are just one point off the top of the PDFL Premier with a game in hand over Coates, who they beat in the opening game of the season.
In the opening stages Deeping took the lead against the run of play.
Oakham had created all the pressure and the chances but failed to get a meaningful shot on target when Rangers Reserves broke up the field and Casey Lewis was on hand to put the ball in the back of the net in the 14th minute.
But Oakham’s response was almost instant and it was defender Ben Cox who came up big for the Rutland pace-setters.
He escaped his marker inside the box from a whipped in Ben Easson corner and despite the crowd in the goalmouth directed a powerful header into the net.
Oakham took the game by the scruff of the neck just before the break with two quick and effectively match winning goals.
Another Easson corner undid the Deeping defence and this time Seb Archer-Fern, who had looked dangerous out wide during the first half, got on the end of the set piece delivery to give his side the lead.
Deeping were obviously rattled by the goal and quickly conceded a third a minute before half time when Rik Phoneix converted.
Rangers put in a spirited effort for the first 25 minutes of the second period in an attempt to get back into a match they had played a big part in but they were unable to break down the Oakham defence and in the dying moments of the match Liam Mullineaux scored for the travelling side off the bench.
Oakham turn their attention to the Leicestershire FA Senior Cup when they travel to Earl Shilton Albion.
Oakham United Reserves secured a great result this week, bouncing back from last week’s disappointment by beating an unbeaten Netherton United A side 4-1 on Saturday.
Victory tasted even sweeter for Oakham because it was revenge for an opening day defeat.
The game started well, with both teams creating chances. Oakham came closest through Antony Maher but minutes later, Netherton broke the deadlock when Oakham failed to clear their lines properly and were punished by a driven effort from the edge of the box.
Ten minutes later, the scores were level after some good football led to Maher setting Will Lee free to slot past the on-coming Netherton keeper.
Shortly after, Oakham produced another great passage of play, which led to Lee scoring his and the team’s second of the game with another tidy finish.
Oakham continued to press and, after Maher missed a chance provided to him by Lee, they got their third, this time from a set piece.
From 25 yards out, George Maxwell curled the ball around the wall and over the goalkeeper’s head, into the roof of the net. Oakham got their fourth just before the break after good play between Joey Watchorn, Maxwell, Sven Hart and Maher led to Hart crossing and a Netherton defender heading into his own net.
The second half was a very different story, as the wind took the sting out of the game and made it hard for both teams. Netherton pressed hard but their attacks came to nothing with goalkeeper Andy Collin and defenders Adam Clarke, Ben Richards and captain Aaron Simpson holding firm.
The half was predominantly a midfield battle and Oakham’s five of Maxwell, Hart, Watchorn, Michael West and Carl Brierley-Lewis battled hard to break up Netherton’s play to win the match.
Captain Aaron Simpson said: “It was a great team performance in which we all battled and worked hard for each other. We were by far the better team, especially in the first half.
“We are glad to have taken three points from top of the league and hope to build on it in the coming weeks.”