Mensah's magnificent treble helps Brent to thrash Thurrock
PUBLISHED: 16:02 16 January 2013 | UPDATED: 16:02 16 January 2013
Saul Mensah netted a hat-trick as Brent under-11s began the new year with a strong performance to see off Thurrock 4-1 in the Witney Cup.
Brent settled quickly, taking an early lead when Andre Ellington broke up a Thurrock attack and found Louie Adedeji, who threaded a pass for Mensah to round the keeper and score.
It was 2-0 soon afterwards as Javarn Bernard sent a neat through ball over the top and Mensah took a touch before rifling a half-volley into the top corner.
At the other end, Brent’s defence held firm, with Daniel McNair playing a key role to deny Thurrock any chances, and Ray Lluka scored a third goal before half-time, switching the ball from right foot to left and hitting an unstoppable volley.
Brent continued to dominate after the break and Thurrock’s keeper did well to save a half-volley from Caleb Watts before Bernard released Mensah to slot home at the near post and complete his treble.
Thurrock responded, winning possession further up the pitch, and they gained reward for their endeavours by pulling a goal back with a low strike into the bottom corner.
But Brent prevented their opponents from making further inroads into the deficit and they might have added a fifth goal when Watts found Sahr Dugba, who took the ball around the goalkeeper, only for his shot to be blocked on the line.
Girl of the match Taegen Kopfler scored both goals as Kinja under-14s came from behind twice to draw 2-2 with title rivals Harvester.
A long-range effort from Olivia Syson put Harvester ahead and, although Kopfler levelled, Syson’s second goal made it 2-1 before the Kinja girl also completed her brace.
Martha Collins and Caoimhe Mesch were both outstanding for Kinja, who had the better of possession and also struck the woodwork twice as they remained second in the table.
Wealdstone under-18 girls went down 3-2 to undefeated Reading after they conceded two late goals despite a battling performance.
The Stones started well and missed a good opportunity to take the lead when Reading conceded a penalty for handball, but Megan Craig blazed the spot-kick over the bar.
Wealdstone did go ahead just before the half-hour mark when Sophie Clegg converted Catherine Fahy’s cross, but Reading pressed hard for the equaliser and forced three good saves from Helena Zepetes before half-time.
The home side levelled just after the restart, but Stones were back in front three minutes later when Fahy supplied another assist for Rochelle Mills to lob the ball neatly over the goalkeeper.
Ria Bird could have made it 3-1 soon afterwards, but failed to convert Fahy’s cross, and Reading fought back to secure victory with goals in the 72nd and 78th minutes.
Goalkeeper Kush Garara produced a number of smart saves to preserve a point for AFC Wembley under-12s in their 1-1 draw at home to Hanwell Town.
AFCW went ahead when Elijah Carter was brought down in the penalty area and, although Renell Scott’s penalty was saved, Shakur Farah reacted quickly to score the rebound.
But Hanwell equalised just before half-time and they put AFCW under pressure in the second half, only to be thwarted by sound defending and the agility of Gurara.
Odain Donaldson hit a hat-trick and Javell Simpson was also on target for the under-12 B team in a 4-1 win over Parkfield, while the under-11s won by the same scoreline at Kodak.
AFC Wembley under-16s won 2-1 at Ruislip Rangers, with the B team drawing 1-1 against Princes Park and the under-15s recording a 4-2 victory at Harlington in the Challenge Cup.
The under-13s fought out a 3-3 draw at Parkfield, while the B team went down 3-0 away to TFA Crouch End. AFCW under-10s lost 5-2 to LNER, but the B team beat Watling Club 3-2 and the under-nines drew 1-1 at Princes Park.
Shakyle Melford scored a hat-trick as Gibbons Wreckers under-14s came from behind twice to beat Acton Ealing Whistlers 4-2.
Acton took a 10th-minute lead on the counter-attack, but Melford glanced in Mohamed Miguil’s cross for the equaliser and the score remained level at half-time.
Although the Wreckers fell behind again at the start of the second period, Melford headed his second equaliser after the keeper was unable to hold Miguil’s swerving drive.
Acton were unlucky to concede a penalty when a defender’s clearance hit his own hand, but Melford gladly completed his treble from the spot.
Darren Corcoran wrapped up the points with the Wreckers’ fourth goal, netting after Melford’s effort had been saved.
Ryan O’Carroll scored twice for GW under-13s in their 4-2 victory at LNER, with Brandon O’Carroll and Charlie Corcoran also on target.