Hastings United put a difficult week behind them to begin their league season with an away victory.
Just three days after the resignation of player-manager Sean Ray, United kick-off their Ryman Football League Division One campaign with a 1-0 win at Chipstead this afternoon (Saturday).
With Mark Stapley and Terry White taking temporary charge of the side, the U’s prevailed thanks to a Matt Maclean goal eight seconds into added time at the end of the first half.
Maclean saw an effort well saved as United bossed the opening 10 minutes. Simon Cooper flashed a free kick across goal as Chipstead came back into it, but it was United who drew first blood when Kenny Pogue chipped a cross to the far post for Maclean to nod home.
Chipstead made a bright start to the second period and Sam Spencer shot straight at Josh Pelling as United failed to clear a corner. Jordan Woodley fired a left-foot shot just wide at the end of a lengthy run for United.
The U’s went close to a second when the home goalkeeper got fingertips to a shot from substitute Jamie Crone and Matt Darby couldn’t convert the rebound. Sam Adams was then whiskers away with a left-foot drive and Maclean shot straight at the goalkeeper, who tipped over Bailo Camara’s curling effort.
United: Pelling, Gilbert, Henson, Olorunda, Kelly, Judge, Darby, Maclean, Adams, Pogue, Woodley. Subs: Crone, Cruttwell, Camara, Shonk, Burbridge.