HORWICH ladies fell to a 2-1 defeat at home to Manto, after a lacklustre second-half performance.

Horwich started well, dominating the opening 15 minutes of a fast-paced game, with Zoe Bluer making some excellent charging midfield runs.

And, after Horwich had won the first short corner of the game, just missing out on the opening goal, another run from Bluer saw her beat the defender and find the net with an excellent reverse-stick strike for a deserved lead.

However, Manto started to create more chances, putting the Horwich defence on the back foot.

A dramatic goalline save from Eve Hilliam-Cooke managed to keep Manto off the scoresheet but it was only brief respite as the visitors converted a short corner right on the stroke of half time.

Horwich fell asleep after the break and allowed Manto to control the play. It seemed like they would escape with a draw but, with just six minutes to play, Manto managed to find the winning goal.

The following day the second team enjoyed better fortunes in their game at home to City of Manchester’s thirds.

City of Manchester took an early lead, capitalising on a defensive error, but Horwich responded immediately with Bluer equalising.

Shortly before half time a good passing move from Horwich gave Lara King the time and space to take aim and fire in their second goal.

City of Manchester started the second half well and quickly scored an equaliser.

After Shannon Lesson had pulled off some great saves to deny City of Manchester, a well-worked short-corner routine saw Rosie Swarbrick slot the ball in the goal and Bluer got her second of the day to make it 4-2.

City of Manchester did not give up the fight and scored their third goal to ensure a nervous last five minutes.

But Horwich held on to claim a deserved victory.

Horwich’s men’s firsts won a much-anticipated derby 3-2 at Bolton seconds.

It was a fiercely competitive game that ebbed and flowed, with plenty of cards shown.

Horwich took the game to the home side from the off, pressing high up the pitch and getting their reward just six minutes into the game.

Tony Sanderson slotted the ball through to Matthew Kirk and he expertly lifted the ball over the diving Bolton keeper to put the visitors 1-0 up.

The Bolton outfit responded and a third short corner in quick succession was converted by Marcus Starr.

Sam Williams’ goal sent Bolton in 2-1 ahead at the break but, following a strong half-time pep talk Horwich came out all guns blazing and took just two minutes to draw level, Andy Barr pouncing on Kirk’s pass to hammer in.

Barr’s winner came after he linked well with David Whiteside, scoring to make the score 3-2.

Horwich then held out in a fast and furious finish to the game, with keeper Ryan Goodman making some excellent saves whenever Bolton attacked on the counter.