Midhurst, Sidlesham and Bosham all won their latest SCFL matches - while Selsey are looking forward to the next round of the FA Vase.
Here is the latest news from our local division-one and two teams...
Midhurst 3 Ringmer 1
SCFL division one
Midhurst took an opportunity to show their strength in depth as Ben Kemplen, new signing Alex Brazier and Cameron Shadbolt all made their first-team debuts.
Unaffected by absentees they comprehensively outplayed Ringmer for the majority of the game and thoroughly deserved the points.
Within the first 15 minutes, Ringmer’s keeper Reid made two excellent saves with his feet from Lewis Hamilton and Lawrence Hyde before he did well to save Luke Sheldrick’s header.
Ringmer gave notice of their threat when they broke quickly and Aaron Jeal had to be alert to save a close-range shot.
Midhurst’s pressure paid off in the 22nd minute when Sheldrick finished well at the near post following an interchange between Hamilton and Scott Dormer.
The lead lasted only minutes as Ringmer’s Harry Millar finished off a sweeping move down the left with a clinical strike. Midhurst continued to attack and would have gone ahead but for an incredible save by Reid when he somehow got his fingertips to a Hamilton chip that looked destined for the top corner.
However he was beaten a couple of minutes later when Hyde headed home Hamilton’s cross to give the hosts a half-time lead.
There could have been a third but Hyde’s surging run through the middle came to nothing as he finally blasted the ball over the bar.
Ringmer came out in the second half more positively but Mark Broughton, Martin May and Paul Grantham were resolute at the back.
There were excellent chances for Hamilton, Dormer and sub Kemplen, with his first touch, to get the decisive third goal. This came in the 90th minute when Kemplen set up Dormer for a close-range finish.
The Stags have amassed 11 points from their seven league games, a stark contrast to the previous season when it took them six games to gain their first point.
MIDHURST: Jeal, Greg Chaplin, Casselton, May, Broughton, Grantham, Martin, Hyde, Hamilton (Brazier 85), Dormer (Shadbolt 88), Sheldrick (Kemplen 78). Unused sub: Tom Chaplin.
* Selsey are another point better off after a 1-1 draw at Langney Wanderers. Selsey’s goal was an own goal.
The Blues visit Horley in the FA Vase second qualifying round on Saturday.
Sidlesham 3 Cowfold 2
SCFL division two
Sidlesham climbed to fourth spot with a tense home win over Cowfold.
Sidlesham welcomed back five key players so the management could choose from a full squad for the first time this season.
Sidlesham went ahead on three minutes when a flowing move ended with Will Essai crossing for Callum Dowdell to crash it home at the far post.
Near the end of the first half, Greg Robinson was to ajudged to have pushed a Cowfold player in the box and the referee awarded a penalty, which was converted to make it 1-1 at the break.
The second half kicked off with Robinson, John Phillips and Dowdell setting up Essai but his shot lacked power.
The second goal came after good work from Toby Pointing, who played a great pass to Dowdell. He found Phillips, who just needed one touch to restore the Sids’ lead.
With the returning Tom Bayley on from the bench, he soon made it 3-1 with a good run and finish from 20 yards out.
The game’s major talking point came in the 80th minute as a Cowfold corner was floated to the back post. With the ball heading towards goal from six yards out Tom Sandals, who had been excellent all afternoon, was to judged to have handled on the line, but the referee at first awarded a free kick to Sidlesham for what may have been a push in the back.
That was altered to award a penalty to Cowfold - and Sandals was sent off.
The penalty was despatched but the home side played out the final ten minutes without too much trouble.
Sidlesham are on the road this weekend to Alford (2pm).
Sidlesham reserves ran out 2-0 winners on Saturday against a stubborn and well-organised Stedham side.
Bosham 3 Westfield 1
Bradley Miles inspired Bosham to another win with a late strike to get the better of a tough Westfield side and maintain Bosham’s unblemished start.
Bosham started well and laid out their stall early. A late change had seen Miles promoted to the starting line-up and he looked sharp in the centre of midfield.
Against the run of play, however, the Yellows took the lead after 12 minutes when Callum Smith found the ball at his feet just yards out and blasted his effort into the roof of the net.
Westfield grew in confidence and largely dominated the half. Bosham looked nervy on the ball but Sam James, stepping up from the reserves, looked full of running up front and had a great chance to level the scores on the half-hour – but keeper Harry Stadley made a fingertip save to deny him.
Bosham got back on level terms a few minutes later when Miles was upended in the box and Graeme Dowden slotted home the penalty.
The second half was open and exciting with both sides pushing hard.
Bosham went close through Marco Giambelardini and Dowden while Smith and sub Zac Hurst went close for the visitors.
The game turned dramatically in the final ten minutes when Westfield’s Martyn Durrant was given his marching orders by referee Mark Spence.
With five minutes left, up stepped Miles to turn the game Bosham’s way. Getting first to a loose ball on the edge of the area he contrived to chip a defender and unleash an unstoppable drive into the roof of the net.
A minute from time, Giambelardini eased any lingering nerves with a sublime finish to seal the points.
Bosham travel to face new side Worthing Leisure this week with a four-point lead at the top.
Bosham: Magee, Gilbert, Bulbeck, Dowden, Docherty, Fewell, Miles, Barnes, Bell, James, Giambelardini. Subs: Redman, Warren.
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