As 2015 draws to close, ambitious Ollerton Town have been reflecting on a year of progress -- and looking forward to next year when they hope to be chasing honours.
Ollerton, who play in the North Division of the Central Midlands League, ended the 2014/15 season in tenth position, which they considered disappointing after holding aspirations to finish higher. But as they go into Christmas, they sit seventh in the table, only six points off second place after a fine run of eight wins in their 13 league matches so far.
“Our overall record in 2015 is won 17, drew three, lost 16,” said a club spokesman. “But we feel we are in a better position now than at the end of last season. It is going to be interesting to see what 2016 brings for Dave Winter’s team.
“Mentjon should also be made of the Ollerton Town Ladies’ team, who ended the 2014/15 season having won all that was available to them in the Notts Ladies League. They have since progressed to a higher level, where they are currently more than holding their own.”
The early stages of the year were mixed for Ollerton’s senior side. Their first game ended in a victory against Easington United, but between then and the end of February, they lost heavily to the likes of Appleby Frodingham and Bilsthorpe, as well as winning 7-1 and 3-1 against Dinnington Town and Thorne Colliery respectively.
March proved to be action-packed with a defeat to Harworth in the Floodlit Cup followed by a 4-1 win over Welbeck, a draw against Askern. a 3-2 defeat in their last home game and a 4-2 loss at Thorne Colliery.
The season came to a close in April with two local derbies that resulted in a 2-0 win against Thoresby and a 1-1 draw against Sherwood. Ollerton ended with a record of winning 15, drawing 5 and losing 14.
The closed season was a busy time for the club. Coaches Lee Scott and Tommy Watson left for Kirton, while former captain Jamie Allan was brought in. Ollerton also added some new players to the squad, including several from Thoresby as well as Jamie Charlton, Kyle Clarkson and Kyle Ludlow.
Pre-season proved to be positive in terms of results and set Ollerton up nicely to start the term well with a 4-1 win at Easington. However, no wins were to follow in the next few games before September concluded with a 2-1 victory over Dinnington Town.
October saw impressive wins against Thorne, Clifton All Whites and Appleby Frodingham as Clarkson scored three free-kicks in successive games before a 5-1 hammering against Askern brought Ollerton back down to earth.
They responded well, however, and went on to win all four games in November, scoring 15 goals and conceding none in the process. A 6-0 triumph over Dinnington, which included four goals by Callam Atkinson was a stand-out moment.
As the year reached its climax, Ollerton celebrated 4-2 victories over Dronfield Town Reserves and Easington. Sandwiched in between was a pulsating 4-4 draw against Clipstone in the Notts FA Senior County Cup as Ollerton came back from 2-0 down before eventually going out on penalties.