Despite the rainclouds doing their best Buntingford Cougars teams managed to get some games in before the Christmas break.

Buntingford Cougars Under12’s had a good morning as The Blues team (pictured) beat Stevenage based Bedwell Rangers in an exciting encounter at London Road. A goal-less first half was a surprising score line after both teams played good football in difficult conditions. Buntingford’s man of the match Nathan Anderson dictated proceedings in midfield and created chances for Josh Ridings, George Godfrey and Jack Lally who were unable to convert. At the other end the visitors could have scored if it were not for Sam Daly making some great stops including one near post effort that he stopped with this feet. In the second half Cougars started to look the better side and Charlie Fountain stepped up a gear and created havoc in the Bedwell defence in a fifteen minute period that saw his create four chances, with one well saved, another narrowly missing and one hitting the woodwork before he got his just reward and scoring on 45 minutes. The final ten minutes saw Gaffer Darryl Dean shore up his defence and midfield and try to hit the visitors on the counter which turned out to be a successful ploy as Buntingford collected all three points.

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Cougars Under12’s Whites put in what Boss Dean Howard described as their best shift of the season and earned a draw against a strong Baldock side. Cougars were by far the better side in the first half and scored two goals courtesy of pocket – sized duo Tom Carter and Yann Boulter but Baldock showed their potential as they forced a couple of good saves. In the second half the visitors stepped up a gear and scored twice to equalise as the game ended in a fair two – two result.

Buntingford’s Under9’s Blues played at home against Bedwell Panthers and enjoyed a goal glut with James Tungett (five), Austin Cook and Lal Wennington (two each) and Blue Salmon (one) were all on the score sheet. Man of the match was Lal Wennington.

Cougars Under 9’s Whites also played at home against Letchworth Gold where all players played really well and had lots of chances but just couldn’t get the ball in the net!! Man of the match was awarded to Luke Dunkerley.

Cougars Under11’s Whites Guvnor Ross Craddock described his side’s performance at Stevenage Boro as “one of the best I have seen for a long time with through balls, skills, passing under pressure and a goal with the last kick of the match”.

Buntingford’s Under7s Manager Phil Allen had similar sentiments for the Under7’s Blues and Whites describing their display as “probably your best footballing performance to date”.

Not to be outdone in wet and very muddy conditions Buntingford U11’s Blues travelled to Baldock to play out a hugely tough but entertaining game which Cougars edged by one goal in a nine goal thriller. Great strikes from Freddie Bentley, Ollie Baker, Stan Wennington were complimented by the winner courtesy of Ben Maley. Stan Gurney, Samuel Miles, Jack Hedge and Sam Maley all battled non-stop for Cougars with Rocco Douglas and Dexter Cumberland providing some super runs and crosses. Ethan Vater in goal for Cougars made some heroic saves in the mud to keep his side in it. As Baldock pressed for an equaliser Cougars could have had two more goals with Wennington skimming the post and Ben Maley coming close for his second . Man of the Match for all his tireless running and effort was Dexter Cumberland.

Elsewhere Paul Skinner’s Under13’s went down five-one at Letchworth whilst Buntingford’s Under14’s Whites beat the same club two – nil at home. Cougars Under14’s Stripes put in a great performance but were unlucky to lose four-two at home to FC Comets. Cougars’ top Under14’s side continued their pressure on league leaders Hitchin as they travelled away to dispatch Letchworth three – two.

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