Lawson joins Sittingbourne injury list
Division One East
|Peter Pitts Reporting|
|Wingate & Finchley||2||Stanton
|This looked to be an important game to win for the Brickies
as before the match they were on the same number of points as the home
side, but with an inferior goal difference, however despite this defeat
results elsewhere meant that they stayed where they were in the
league table before the game, seventh from bottom, writes Peter Pitts.
The day started badly for the Brickies with Steve Williams reporting injured and with sub keeper Lee Friend also injured Rob Hudson was drafted in for his first match for the senior side.
Williams joined an expanding injury list that includes Bradley Spice, Joe Dowley, Jon Neal, Dan Edwards, Mark Lovell whilst Lee Hockey was serving the last match of his suspension.
During midweek Wingate & Finchley had a creditable victory over AFC Wimbledon in the London Senior Cup by 3-2 after extra time and with Wingate already claiming a point from the Brickies back in August this was never going to be an easy game.
Sittingbourne started badly conceding a goal after just six minutes when Dan Stanton found himself with space on the edge of the Brickies area and fired a great shot past the diving Rob Hudson.
The Brickies responded well and almost straight from the restart Kieran Marsh had a shot well held by Wingate keeper Ed Thompson.
Unfortunately the Sittingbourne injury jinx struck again on 12 minutes when Danny Lawson fell awkwardly and had to be stretchered off. Toby Ashmore took his place and played well. Thankfully it was learnt after the game that Lawson hadn't suffered a break.
What was probably the turning point in the game then occurred on 20 minutes when a great run in the Wingate box by Mitchell Sherwood ended when he was pushed off the ball by a defender and referee Mr Belbin awarded the Brickies a penalty. Up stepped Michael Smissen and although his shot didn't look too bad Thompson made an excellent diving save to save his second penalty in two games having pulled off the same feat against Wimbledon.
It didn't look as though the Brickies were dwelling over the miss as only four minutes later Marsh was all alone on the edge of the Wingate area and he sent in a marvellous curling shot that sneaked just inside the left hand post and the Brickies were level.
Both sides were now very evenly matched and they were both having chances with Smissen having a shot well saved and at the other end Sam Sloma firing just over the Brickies bar.
Hudson was having a confident debut in the Brickies goal and on 36 minutes he pulled off a great save by turning Shahed Ahmed's shot round a post.
Sittingbourne had a good start to the second half and Lee Browning had a promising run ended by Jon Ellis who just managed to kick the ball clear, then a Clint Gooding free kick was headed goal-wards by Dan Tanner but the effort was kicked off the line.
But you have to take your chances and on 61 minutes a cross field pass found Simon Patterson and he crashed a great shot past Hudson to put the London side into the lead.
Five minutes later a fine free kick by Sloma curled just wide of the left hand post.
Sittingbourne pushed men forward but were unable to break the Wingate defence and almost right on time Hudson did well to hold a Stanton shot. In injury time it looked as though the Brickies had got the equalising goal that their play had deserved when a driving cross was deflected towards his own goal by a Wingate defender but with the Brickies supporters shouting goal the ball agonisingly looped just wide.
Sittingbourne's next game sees them pitted once again at bottom side Berkhamsted Town and a win over them now looks vital.
MISS: Michael Smissen's penalty at Wingate & Finchley was saved by Ed Thompson, who also saved a penalty in their 3-2 (aet) win over AFC Wimbledon in the London Senior Cup last week
Photograph: Chris Regan - www.sittingbournefc.co.uk
|Sittingbourne: Hudson, Lawson (Ashmore 12), Tanner,
Campbell, Marsh, Browning, Gooding, Smissen, Knowles, Sherwood. Subs: Taylor, Belcher