Nyetimber Pirates, Lavant and East Dean all won away from home in the latest round of West Sussex League games.
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Holbrook 1 Nyetimber Pirates 2
West Sussex League premier division
A late Michael Frangou brace was enough for Nyetimber Pirates to claim all three points with a 2-1 win over Holbrook.
The win means the Looters stay top of the division, two points above second-placed Lavant, who won 3-1 at Shipley.
Pirates brought back Linkhorn and Frangou with Sam Pasterfield filling in as a make shift centre-back on his 100th appearance for the club.
Nyetimber started slowly and Holbrook, who always seem to cause the league leaders a problem, took the lead after one minute when goalkeeper Warren Pye turned an innocuous cross into his own net.
A shell-shocked Pirates were nearly 2-0 down minutes later but the Holbrook striker hit the post with a header from two yards out.
Pirates started to play themselves back into the game but it wasn’t until the second half they really started to push Holbrook with Scott Towers and Andy Cox causing problems down both flanks.
Boss Ted Griffin made four changes as the minutes ticked down with Turner, Westbrook, Stanley and debutant Danny Miller all coming in to try to push for the equaliser.
The pressure finally paid off when captain Frangou turned in Cox’s mis-hit shot leaving the keeper with no chance making it 1-1.
Pirates continued to bombard Holbrook with a barrage of attacks but it looked like the elusive second would never come.
The winner finally came on 88 minutes when Frangou struck again with a curling effort finding its way into the top corner giving the Pirates their 17th win in a row.
This weekend Newtown are the visitors to Pirate Park (2pm).
Pirates: Pye, Linkhorn, Williamson, Horn, Pasterfield, Towers, Cox, Haga- Hammond, Chester, Angell, Frangou. Subs: Turner, Westbrook, Miller, Stanley, Wyatt.
TD Shipley 1 Lavant 3
Lavant beat newly-promoted TD Shipley to keep pace with runaway leaders Nyetimber Pirates.
TD’s pitch was nice and wide and Lavant exploited this early on. But the home side settled and caused the Lavant full-backs problems.
TD had the first meaningful attempts on goal with Ash Court pulling off several impressive stops. Lavant failed to test the TD keeper in the first half although Pete Caveney, Dan Baker and James Sandford all had chances.
The game sprang into life midway through the second half. A Lavant set-piece was cleared up field and two Lavant defenders and the keeper failed to take control, leaving TD’s willing runner to loop the ball home.
Lavant made changes to personnel and shape and with a more direct approach, Aaron Hancock headed the ball on past the keeper, finding Ash Hawkes, who calmly finished.
The visitors were awarded a spot-kick. Paul Jones stepped up but it was well saved by TD’s keeper. But Lavant kept the pressure up and moments later Baker toed one home.
A smart counter attack involving Hancock, Baker and Sandford found Hawkes to score his second.
Lavant: Court, Grace, Jones, Lyttle, Gabb, Stevens, Augustus, Hancock, Caveney, Sandford, Baker. Subs: Hawkes, Wright.
Fernhurst Sports 1 East Dean 5
West Sussex League Championship south
East Dean started brightly and were rewarded for their efforts when Craig Manchip fired home from a loose ball from close range.
Fernhurst pushed for an equaliser but East Dean’s defence stayed solid.
Shortly after the break the lead was doubled when Steve Haynes smashed the ball home from just outside the box, leaving the keeper with no chance.
The home side were reduced to nine men after a red card and injury left the team struggling for the remainder of the match.
East Dean made the most of this advantage and added a third through James Ford.
Fernhurst pulled one back through a penalty but instantly conceded again when Lee Bessey sent Ben Pett through on goal and he slotted home. Manchip grabbed his second just before the end ,nodding home Aaron Freeman’s cross.
East Dean: Philpott, James, Clark, K.Manchip, Shewell, Richards, Haynes, Odonnell, Ferre, C.Manchip, Ford. Subs; Bessey, Pett, Freeman, Sedgewick.
– BEN PETT
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