East Preston rallied superbly to record a first victory of 2019 last night.
Goals in either half from Jake Heryet and Asa Nicholson wrapped up a 2-0 SCFL Premier Division triumph over Peacehaven & Telscombe at The Lashmar.
And the victory was made all the more impressive as the hosts had to play nearly an hour with ten men.
Scott Rafferty received a straight red card for a last-man tackle on 35 minutes but Bob Paine’s troops still managed to go on and get all three points.
East Preston’s first fixture since the turn of the year ended in defeat at Hassocks on Saturday.
However, they were quick to put that loss behind them.
Heryet’s persistence saw him force a Peacehaven defender into an error.
The East Preston man kept his composure before slotting the hosts ahead after 21 minutes.
When Rafferty was brandished a straight red card ten minutes before the break, it looked a tall order for the hosts to hold on.
They did more than that, though, as Nicholson got a second in stoppage time to wrap up a well-earned victory.
n East Preston started 2019 with a SCFL Premier Division defeat at in-form Hassocks.
Bob Paine’s side produced a lacklustre display in the opening exchanges, with Phil Johnson’s 35th-minute effort making the difference as Robins were 1-0 winners.
East Preston boss Paine felt his side improved as the match went on but had no complaints about the defeat.
He said: “We didn’t start the game well and gave Hassocks something to hang onto.
“We were much better in the second half with much more desire and put them under a lot of pressure without creating much in the way of clear-cut chances.
“Unfortunately as the half went on we got frustrated, our discipline went and with it any hope of getting something from the match.”
A poor opening 20 minutes from East Preston meant they found it difficult to get a foothold in the game.
The visitors had a lucky escape when Robins struck a post but were ahead soon after.
It proved to be the only goal of the game, although there was a bit of good fortune about it.
Lewis Jenkins’ attempted clearance hit Luke Brodie and fell kindly to a Robins player, whose cross was fired home by Johnson from six yards ten minutes before the break.
East Preston dominated possession after the restart but failed to create many clear-cut chances.
Dan Huet had a shot on 49 minutes which Joshua Green in the Hassocks goal saved.
Brodie flicked a ball goalwards from a corner but the ball sailed over the crossbar as EP pushed for a leveller.
However, Hassocks managed the game out well as EP grew increasingly frustrated and ended up collecting four yellow cards in what turned out to be a poor start to the new year.
EAST PRESTON: Bentley; DaCosta, Jenkins, Slaughter, Etherington, Searle, Pattenden, Barnes, Huet, Nicholson, Brodie. Subs: Heryet (Pattenden, 60), Raffery (Slaughter, 76), Gilbey, Pidgeon, Crook.
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