Worthing scored twice in each half to vanquish their Combination League neighbours at a windswept Culver Road.
Manager, Adam Hinshelwood opted to use two different starting elevens, with the exception of Rui Buckland in goal and Mo Jannah on the bench. While the hosts included ex-Reds, Daz Goldsmith, Will Berry, Josh Gould and Matt Daniel in their line-up.
In a near identical fashion to Sunday’s goalfest at Pagham, the action got underway in the opening seconds when the returning Aarran Racine defied the galeforce conditions to sweep a stunning pass for Kyle O’Brien to chase down the left wing. He only needed one touch to control and a second to send over a cross that was met by a diving header from Ollie Pearce, to put his team a goal to the good.
Lancers had the chance to equalise when Cam Tutt lost possession to Conrad Honore who played a simple ball to teammate, Ben Connolly but Racine got back to block.
Connolly came even closer moments later when he chipped onto the crossbar after Honore had, once more, won the ball in midfield, this time off Ricky Aguiar and allowed his colleague to advance briefly, where he spotted Buckland off his line and came within a whisker of beating him from around thirty-five yards out.
That after Pearce had nodded a good chance the wrong side of the post at the other end.
It didn’t take long for the leveller to arrive though, as Jesse Starkey’s backpass to Buckland on the byline, outside his own penalty area, led to a rash clearance by the ‘keeper straight to Finn Daniels. His touch onto Connolly found Gould free in the box and he side-footed home against his former employers.
However, parity only lasted a couple of minutes as a high boot in Pearce’s nether regions by a stretching and prone Yellows Captain, Liam Hendy saw referee, Will Briers point to the spot.
Our number ten recovered and arose to power the penalty high into the net, right down the middle of Mitch Bromage’s goal.
Ollie had two opportunities to add to his tally and increase his side’s lead; one for himself and one for sub, Jannah. The first was provided by a right flank delivery from in front of the visiting dugout by Aguiar that took an inadvertent flick off Berry and dropped perfectly into Pearce’s path. Unfortunately, his chip went over Bromage and the bar. A similar outcome befell Jannah – on in place of debutant trialist, Sherrell Assidjo – as he couldn’t keep down his effort when connecting with Ollie’s low ball in from the left.
That last attempt had come via a poor touch by Berry allowing Pearcey to set-up a goalscoring chance for Mo. He made no mistake seconds later with a pass to Honore who helped on for Mitch Hewens and he chased it to the byline where he got the better of Tutt and broke into the box to tee-up Gould, on the edge of the ‘d’ but Buckland caught comfortably.
A Starkey free-kick on the right led to a mis-kick by Daniels and a gentle header in front of the target by Racine to Jannah, whose shot deflected to Kieron Pamment who could only blast into the side netting at the back stick.
The two teams nearly went into the break level-pegging as Honore moved forward and his pass to Connolly was controlled and hit on the turn in an instant; bouncing over a diving Buckland’s outstretched arm and striking the upright.
Early in the second period and Darren Budd spotted Joel Colbran on the right. The full-back cut inside his marker only to be denied by Bromage’s boot at the front stick. Tom Chalaye also being kept out in a carbon copy replay not long after.
Tom soon got on the scoresheet though when Colbran curved a delightful slide-rule pass around both replacement, Dave Sharman and a lunging Budd and saw the half-time inductee beat Bromage to the ball to leave him with the simple task of tapping into an empty net.
He almost had a second when his powerful drive hit a home defender and resulted in a corner and did have a second after Daniel had gifted possession to the on trial Michael Adouan, who passed inside to the Worthing number nine and his eventual attempt took a heavy deviation off the unlucky Hendy before looping up and dropping into the top corner.
The final twenty minutes were a quiet affair, with the only noteworthy chance featuring that man, Chalaye again.
Colbran’s throw-in by the main stand released an onside Tom who burst clear of the Lancer’s backline until he found himself surrounded by yellow shirts in the eighteen-yard box. However, he recovered well to find room on the byline where he picked out Assidjo, unmarked on the far side of the area and his well-struck effort was impressively pushed onto the bar by Bromage.
Match Report: Gareth Nicholas