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Ryan Ellwood scores an eight minute hat-trick as Deeping United defeat Oundle Town Reserves

Deeping United remain on course to have both of their teams in the last eight of the Peterborough Minor Cup competition.

The first team remain top of Group D after a 7-0 success over Oundle Town Reserves on Saturday.

Their place in the quarter-finals will be virtually secured this weekend if Thorpe Wood Rangers Reserves fail to beat Sawtry.

Ryan Ellwood scored an eight-minute hat-trick. (47093382)
Ryan Ellwood scored an eight-minute hat-trick. (47093382)

United's reserve team shared the spoils in a 2-2 away draw at Cambridge on Saturday and can book their spot in the last eight with victory in their final group game with Ramsey Town Reserves on Saturday, May 22.

Joint first team boss Ian Abbott commented: "It's great and it would be good for both teams to get through.

"Our Under 18s are also through to the semi-finals in the Peterborough Youth League competition so all of our older teams have done really well."

An eight minute hat-trick from Ryan Ellwood was the highlight of United's success at Oundle on Saturday.

They were missing Nathan Smith and Adam Richardson while influential midfielder Matty Kent was forced off early on after picking up an injury in the warm-up but his replacement Dan Cushen produced a fine display in his first outing of the season.

A tentative start from the visitors saw them playing up the slope in the first period and it wasn't until the 25th minute that they broke the deadlock when Lewis Bradley teed up Steve Jucikas to score with a well-struck low finish.

The goal settled Deeping down and they increased their advantage three minutes before half-time when Matt Wilkins provided the pass for Bradley to score.

Jucikas scored his second and United's third just before the hour mark with Wilkins again the provider.

United made it four five minutes later as Ellwood started to steal the show by setting up Bradley for his second goal with a fine diagonal pass.

Ellwood then took centre stage with a superb solo goal to open his account with United's fifth of the afternoon.

He was then supplied by a Matty Gunns pass to score again a minute later before completing his hat-trick from Bradley's assist.

Abbott added: "We missed some good chances and their goalkeeper made some good saves, but it was a comfortable win in the end.

Steve Jucikas struck twice in the 7-0 win. (47093386)
Steve Jucikas struck twice in the 7-0 win. (47093386)

"It boosts our goal difference and we have now got one foot in the quarter-finals."

United's reserve side defied the absence of a number key players to pocket a vital point in their trip to third-placed Cambridge.

They were missing the Reeve quartet of Adam, Dan, Jamie and Liam as well as Oliver Fountain, Joe Fane and goalkeeper Cliff Barrett.

Alex Timoshencko and Ian Walker formed a makeshift partnership at centre-half while Kye Buchan made only his second appearance of the season in goal.

An end-to-end opening saw United take the lead in the first period when David Howe was brought down when clean through by home goalkeeper Tihomir Penev.

Penev was red-carded and Howe blasted the resultant free kick into the bottom corner of the home net from just outside the area.

Deeping doubled their advantage in the second period when Lewis Challis netted his 10th goal of the season after converting a pass from Timoshencko.

But Cambridge rallied and, with the advantage of having more substitutes at their disposal, were able to refresh their troops to hit back and equalise through goals from Kazi Arfan and Hadleigh Liddle.

Both sides had a chance to snatch maximum points late on as Timoshencko went close for United while Cambridge skied a gilt-edged opportunity in the last minute.

Reserve boss Chris Hall said: "We went with just the 12 players so the positive was that we didn't lose the game.

"We are still in the driving seat to reach the quarter-finals and the players that came into the squad did very well. I was proud of their efforts."

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