On a cold, wet, dismal afternoon in Eastbourne, Pagham’s proud unbeaten league record was shattered by a rampant Eastbourne Town side that in the end thoroughly deserved their win.
The first 20 minutes were very even with a lot of huffing and puffing by both sides, but no real chances created at either end. Even the return to Lions colours of Dan Simmonds could not inspire Pagham to create much - too many long balls intercepted by the Townies defence.
On 24 minutes Eastbourne made their first chance of the game when Lions goalie James Binfield made a superb stop on the edge of the six-yard box, having given the ball away in the first place. Pagham tried hard to get back in the game but again things were just not happening. Then in the last minute of the half, Eastbourne took the lead through Zac Attwood who burst through the defence and buried his shot into the bottom corner of the net from the edge of the penalty box.
There was still time left for Simmonds to be booked on the half-way line, presumably for something he said to the referee, before the whistle went with Pagham trailing 1-0.
The second half started with a bang - just five minutes in, the Townies doubled their lead when George Taggart took advantage of a punch from Binfield that didn’t clear the penalty area and he smashed the ball home: 2-0 and the Lions were really up against it.
On 70 minutes they took off Callum Overton for Jack Rowe-Hurst, but it was still Eastbourne that were looking the better side. And sure enough, three minutes later it was 3-0 when Aaron Capon tapped the ball home from close in after an excellent cross from the left that evaded everyone else.
Pagham made one more change, bringing on Shane Brazil for Scott Murfin but it did no good. Rowe-Hurst was booked for a late tackle as the Lions desperately tried to find a consolation goal, which they almost did in the final minute when Brazil blazed over the top with the goal gaping. It was that sort of afternoon for the boys from Nyetimber Lane.
They will be keen to improve on this when they travel to Sholing in the FA Vase next Saturday.
Pagham: Binfield, Williamson, van Driel, Simmonds, Wollers, Horncastle, Chick, Neighbour, Murfin (Brazil), Gaskin, Overton (Rowe-Hurst). Subs not used: Hendrick, Ashmore.