LIAM WILES ensured Shepley extended their lead at the top of the Drakes Premiership after their crisp bowling unit had shone against Marsden.
Their efforts came as Slaithwaite closed the gap on Frank Platt Championshipleaders Thongsbridge thanks to a sound all-round effort from Kiwi signing Sean Davey, while in the Cedar Court Conference both Lascelles Hall and Armitage Bridge lost ground on leaders Moorlands as they shared a dramatic tie.
At Marsh Lane, Marsden captain Matt Butters had 37 but his side were bowled out for 101 with Craig Glover taking four for 37, Daniel Wood three for 22 and skipper Danny Glover three for 32.
Chris Kilner took three for 55 in reply, but Wiles was unbeaten on 34 as Shepley eased over the line for the loss of four wickets.
Of the clubs playing catch-up, Golcar, Honley and Elland all scored wins while second-placed Kirkburton dropped down after their shock defeat at home to Scholes.
Adam France was twice on a hat trick and claimed five for 13 as Kirkburton were sent back for just 73 inside 25 overs, teenage opener Louis Brook chipping in with three for 24.
Craig Fletcher bagged four for 43 to provide a sliver of hope for Greg Buckley’s side, but Kiwi opener Joe Carter stuck around to finish unbeaten on 31 as skipper Tom Brook struck the winning blow.
Simon Kelly rattled a superb unbeaten 101 to give Honley five points as they chased down 156-9 against Shelley at Far End Lane.
Bilal Khiljee had hit 73 and Museji Bhoola 52 for Shelley, but they were pegged back by Ritchie Howarth’s four for 35 and Martin Green’s three for 28.
Kelly was in irresistible form in reply and received solid support from Eddie Wilson with 38.
Steve Whitwam was another to make a ton as Golcar won by eight runs against Skelmanthorpe, who restricted them to 226-6 despite Whitwam’s fine 112 and Cameron Fletcher’s 73.
Bjorn Taylor and Alex Scholefield had three wickets apiece and Skelmanthorpe then made a solid enough reply, but they couldn’t quite get there at 218-6, Haroon Rashid hitting 77 and Will Hinchliffe claiming three for 79.
Elland had skipper Paul Winrow to thank for their win at his former club Barkisland.
Winrow finished 103 not out as Niall Lockley and Greg Finn hit half-centuries as Elland gained a nine-wicket win after being set 225-6 by the home side, Jamie Summerscales hitting 119 not out.
Irfan Zahoor hit 137 as Delph crushed Hall Bower, while Ryan Robinson had a fine all-round day in Hoylandswaine’s victory against Holmfirth, hitting 94 and picking up three wickets.
While Championship leaders Thongsbridge picked up five points against Cawthorne, Slaithwaite closed the gap to just three points with a solid win at Meltham.
Slaithwaite put up 229-6 with Ian Holt compiling 78 and Davey 59, then the latter got to work with the ball and picked up five for 46 with his left-arm seam, Dave Berry chipping in with three for 39.
As Conference leaders Moorlands took a comfortable six points off Paddock, Lascelles Hall and Armitage Bridge finished tied on 210.
Carl Jump took six wickets for the Bridge while Kamran Saleem made the vital four-wicket contribution for the Hall.