Lindsay strikes late to deny East Preston

East Preston boss Bob Paine was sent to the stands in the draw at Hassocks.
East Preston boss Bob Paine was sent to the stands in the draw at Hassocks.

East Preston Football Club were forced to settle for a point in their Southern Combination League Premier Division clash at Hassocks on Saturday.

An own-goal and a superb individual strike from Ryan Quirke had cancelled out Michael Death’s early opener but Jake Lindsay’s effort two minutes from time ensured it ended 2-2 at The Beacon.

East Preston - who remain 15th after the draw at second-from-bottom Robins - could and probably should have taken all three points. No team in the bottom five - of those in action - managed to get a win and EP boss Bob Paine wants his side to start performing better against teams around them in the table.

He said: “Disappointed to not have taken home the three points after coming back from a goal down. Ryan (Quirke’s) fantastic individual effort was great, you won’t see a better goal all season in this league.

“Taking the positives out of the game, we have only lost one in four games. We need to be doing better against the teams in and around us, which is something we need to address.”

Death was allowed time and space to get a shot off after seven minutes, which he fired past Ben Purkis to put Hassocks ahead.

EP were not trailing for long and levelled seven minutes later.

Quirke took on three players but saw an effort well saved, he got to the rebound first and it deflected in off a Hassocks defender.

Paine was forced in to his first change as centre-half Tom Lyne suffered a nasty ankle injury following a late challenge eight minutes after the restart.

A piece of magic from Quirke 23 minutes from time should have won it for East Preston.

The midfielder took on five Robins defenders and kept his composure to slot past goalkeeper Philip Wickwar for his fourth goal in as many matches.

East Preston then had boss Paine sent to the stands after a coming together with a Robins player in the technical area after 72 minutes.

Quirke’s effort would have been worthy of winning any match but Hassocks snatched a point a minute from time.

Lindsay rounded Purkis, slotting in to the empty net as it finished 2-2.

EAST PRESTON: Purkis; Josh Parazo, Etherington, Lyne, Beaney; Searle, Gilbertson; Brodie, Quirke, Hunter; Huet. Subs: Barnes (Lyne, 53), Da Costa (Searle, 63), Laughlin (Gilbertson, 78), McDonald, Heryet.