THE first South Devon Football League Herald Cup semi-final was played on Wednesday at Buckfastleigh, with Division Three underdogs Ashburton Association taking on Premier Division leaders.

Ilsington Villa progressed to only their second appearance in a Herald Cup final with a 6-0 win – their last final being a defeat to Upton Athletic in 1981.

On Thursday evening the first championship trophy was won and presented pitchside to a jubilant Bovey Tracey team who have taken their division by storm and remain unbeaten with two games to go. On the night they beat Paignton Villa 2-1.

South Devon League football. Dartmouth Cup action from Buckland Athletic 2nds versus Paignton Saints 1st.  A 2-1 win for Buckland.
The Paignton Saints goalkeeper claims a high ball. (Steve Pope/MDA)

Ilsington are just two points off being crowned Premier Division champions for the first time in their history. A 5-1 home win against basement boys Brixham AFC has taken them within touching distance of being uncatchable. This was brought forward by a week as Kingsteignton Athletic were held by Waldon Athletic at Windmill Hill – 1-1 was the final scoreline.

Morley Rangers are now in pole position for the runners up spot after a 5-4 victory at struggling East Allington United thanks to a Corbin Mackin hat-trick and a double from Steven Rogers to put the Plymouth-based team in a good place

The top of Division One continues to change every week. It looks like Ivybridge Town have got the wobbles – a 2-2 draw with Brixham Town leaves the door open for the top five clubs to remain in the hunt for a top-two place. Newton Abbot Spurs are one of those clubs with Premier Division ambitions; a 6-0 win over relegated Buckfastleigh Rangers Reserves keeps them well in contention.

The shock result in this division came in the Dartmouth Cup, where Buckland Athletic Reserves knocked out favourites Paignton Saints at Homers Heath – a 2-1 win for the young Bucks sets up what must surely be called the friendly final against Paignton Villa on May 24 at Stoke Gabriel.

South Devon League football. Dartmouth Cup action from Buckland Athletic 2nds versus Paignton Saints 1st.  A 2-1 win for Buckland. Buck's second goal
Buckland Athletic 2nds score the winning goal. (Steve Pope/MDA)

Division Two leaders Bovey Tracey extended their advantage to 10 points with a 2-0 win over Barton Athletic. Bovey are just one game from completing an unbeaten season – credit must be given to them for playing four games in seven days to get the job done.

In Division Three’s Ronald Cup, Watcombe Wanderers 2nds made it through to their third cup final this season – a 5-1 home win against Totnes and Dartington Reserves secured their place in the league cup final to go with the Devon Intermediate Cup and the Fred Hewings Cup.

In Division Four there are new leaders and, for the first time this season, Drake have been knocked off top spot by Liverton United Reserves, a 4-1 win at Paignton Villa puts them two points clear with five games to play.