Farnley Sports were in dreamland after three wins in a week in the Premier Division and the Terry Marflitt Trophy transformed their season.
After laying relegation ghosts to rest against St Nicholas last week, Scott Horner’s side booked their place in the final of the trophy with a 2-1 defeat of the same opposition and then went on to beat Ealandians 8-2 on Saturday.
Their win in midweek at Liversedge’s Clayborn Ground came thanks to a Mark Ferguson goal on 80 minutes after Andy Punter’s first-half strike had been cancelled out by Ishmael Mills for Nick’s.
Farnley endured a difficult run in the new year but three successive wins has been the culmination of improvement, whereas Ealandians have imploded on the back of four straight losses.
Punter continued on the goal trail and he had a brace within 40 minutes, with his side cruising at half-time at Lawns Lane.
They put six past their visitors after the break, with Punter completing his treble on 79 minutes and Liam Copland and Ferguson both bagging second-half braces.
The Ealandians response came from Ory Goldthorpe and Chris Schofield.
Horner set the target of a cup final and a top six finish at the start of the season and while the league campaign has generally failed to hit the heights, his outfit can set a second cup final date if they beat Championship challengers Morley Town in the semi-final of the Yorkshire Old Boys Shield at the weekend. Trinity Old Boys were relegated to the Championship as they fell 5-1 to Beeston Juniors at Cardinal Square at the weekend.
Trinity’s relegation was no surprise with the combination of serious injuries and repeated absences conspiring to make it a virtual inevitably come season’s end.
They put through their own goal twice on Saturday, as Ryan Dawson, Brad Lloyd and Dayle Kellet rubbed salt in the wounds.
Beeston, meanwhile, are on the up and their fourth win in five took them up to fourth place in the table although teams below them have games in hand.
The top flight’s other fixture saw Alwoodley, by now well out of the title race, share an undistinguished 2-2 draw with Stanningley.
The pitch at Hough Top made an attractive game impossible but Jamie McGeorge took matters into his own hands with a 30-yard screamer to open the scoring.
The reliable Graham Shaw levelled for Alwoodley, a volleyed finish from a right-wing cross, before doubling his tally minutes later at the back post to make it 2-1.
Terrell Phillips drew the sides level before half-time and they could not be separated by a scrappy second half.
Drighlington moved seven points clear at the top of the Championship by beating Collingham Juniors 5-2.
A 2-1 half-time lead became gradually more comfortable with top scorer Shane Sowden getting two, Ryan Rhodes, Ben Small and Sam Thorpe also getting on the scoresheet.
Mount St Mary’s are conceding the second promotion place to Morley Town after a third defeat this month came for them in the shape of a 4-1 loss to Beeston St Anthony’s.
Beeston blew away their opposition by half-time at Beggars Hill and were four up by the time the break arrived.
Matt Boyes and Tony Garth had established a two-goal advantage inside 20 minutes, which Lee Coleman and Sam Bradley doubled in time for the interval.
Beeston’s defensive error, that let Conor Parsons in to score 10 minutes from time, was the only blemish on an excellent performance.
The uphill task facing Alwoodley Reserves – to escape from relegation to the third tier – has become a mountain to climb after they were felled 3-1 by Wortley at West Leeds RUFC.
Joe Hudson scored twice, a long-range stunner and a cushioned volley from the edge of the area, alongside Connor Ward’s effort for the hosts.
The second tier’s other game saw Shire Academics beat bottom side Thornesians 2-0 thanks to goals from Adam Rothera and Matt Nicholson.
In Division One, a points deduction means that Grangefield Reserves are guaranteed to be relegated and they lost 7-2 at Garforth Rangers this weekend.
Rothwell, on the other hand, have a slim chance of saving their lives which they enhanced by defeating their closest rivals Dewsbury Rangers.
There are now seven points between the two sides, second- and third-bottom respectively, with Rothwell having played a game less.
Third-placed Leeds Independent and fourth-placed Horsforth St Margaret’s both earned victories, which came 3-2 over Huddersfield YMCA and 6-1 over Old Batelians.
Idle sealed their Division Two promotion with a 4-2 win over Leeds City Old Boys.