Alfie Young for Danny Barker and Marvin Armstrong for Kieron Pamment were the only changes to last week’s starting eleven, as Cam Tutt and Darren Budd returned amongst the subs alongside Danny, Pammy and Lloyd Dawes.
It was the play-off chasing Robins who got us underway, when a left wing corner found it’s way back to Christie Pattisson lurking just outside the box but his well-struck effort flashed the wrong side of the far post.
If that should have acted as a warning sign it wasn’t heeded, as Aarran Racine could only clear another cross in from the left as far as Dulwich Hamlet loanee, Lewis White and he slammed home the opening goal of the game, a fraction inside the penalty area.
The visitors responded through Jasper Pattenden, whose run past the main stand and then in towards the middle ended with a pass to Ollie Pearce and he too drove his shot wide of the opposite upright.
Bobby Price’s attempts at preventing a corner only half succeeded when his ball up in the air dropped nicely for Jesse Starkey to try his luck from the ‘D,’ only for him to not only end up clearing the crossbar but also the stand and car park behind it.
On thirty-three minutes, an equaliser suddenly changed the outlook of the afternoon. Reece Myles-Meekums got his right flank delivery in at the second time of asking and Fin Stevens picked it up on the far side of the area. His curler, aimed just inside the back stick, never got that far as the head of Daniel Pappoe ensured it arrowed past former Red, Kleton Perntreou at his front one instead.
Parity nearly lasted less than sixty seconds when Ola Sogbanmu rose above the rest to head only narrowly over the target from Tommy Bradford’s flag-kick.
A quickly taken throw-in on the right sent Joel Colbran scampering away and his pull-back to Ricky Aguiar led to Perntreou pulling off his first save of the contest, shortly afterwards.
If a deflection robbed Stevens of his debut Senior strike for Worthing, there was no doubting it was he who slid in to stop Pattisson’s free go at goal, following Omar Koroma’s short pass.
White’s (as Carshalton were in red) almost went in at the break in front, as a Starkey corner caused concern and Racine’s header was blocked by the Robin’s well-marshalled goalline, then Alfie Young saw his effort deflected behind by Sogbanmu.
After the turnaround, White put on the afterburners to get away from both Stevens and Racine on the right but his penalty area pull-back to Koroma was hooked over the bar and out of the ground by the prone striker, who had slipped at the most unfortunate moment.
The crossbar came to the guest’s rescue when Paris Hamilton-Downes’ free-kick, near the corner flag, led to Luke Read hitting the framework, before the referee blew for a foul on Fin.
A great long ball by Young found Pamment in the box, only for a heavy first touch to take the ball away from the forward and through to Perntreou, before a charged down clearance in midfield presented Bradford with a chance to break down the left and centre for Koroma, via a flick off Colbran’s outstretched heel, to power an attempt on target but he couldn’t beat Carl Rushworth from point-blank range.
Play rapidly switched to the other end with Starkey at the forefront of it and he supplied Aguiar, whose right-sided cross was punched out by Perntreou as far as Stevens, who whistled one marginally over the bar from twenty yards.
Red’s reacted though Pattisson’s burst down the wing and delivery into Koroma, though he was unable to keep his shot down.
Dawes’ introduction saw him slice wide, four minutes from the end and half-time replacement, Ernold Haxhiu blasted goalwards but unfortunately for him and his teammates, nowhere near it.
Then, just when it looked like both sides would have to settle for a point, Pappoe pressed the self-destruct button by needlessly pushing over Aguiar in the box to concede a penalty, in the last minute of normal time.
Responsibility fell on the shoulders of Dawesy and he duly obliged by giving Perntreou no chance from the spot, to leave the travelling contingent with their hands in the air and the home contingent with their heads in their hands.
Lloyd’s late intervention, for the second week running, came close to repeating itself again but Perntreou was out of his goal quickly to get to the ball ahead of him.
The fourth and final minute allowed for stoppages produced one last throw of the dice for the hosts, when White turned and hooked a cross in from the right and, despite doing his best to extend his considerable frame, Player-Manager, Peter Adeniyi could only nod past the post.