Rye United’s 13-match unbeaten run ground to a shuddering halt last night (Tuesday).
The Quarterboys were thumped 5-0 away to Lingfield in Sussex County Football League Division One after having two players sent-off. Rye drop a place to fifth with five games remaining.
After Lingfield’s captain escaped with a yellow card for a two-footed tackle on Anthony Storey, Rye fell behind to a Harry Sintim goal from a fifth minute corner. A frustrated Storey was then sent-off for a tackle of his own.
Lingfield struck twice more before the break and Andy Atkin missed a penalty early in the second period after a home player wasn’t sent-off for handball on the line.
Ryan Alexander was shown a second yellow card for conceding a spot-kick which Lingfield blazed over. The home side soon scored a fourth, though, and added a late fifth despite the tireless efforts of Rye’s nine men.
Missed chances and a couple of defensive lapses were to blame as Sidley United suffered a 2-1 defeat away to Crowborough Athletic in the same division. The Blues squandered three glorious chances during a goalless first half and fell behind to a penalty early in the second period.
Sidley conceded a second goal from a corner not long afterwards and although they pulled one back through a cracking effort by Sam Willett, Crowborough held on. Despite the defeat, Sidley are now guaranteed to finish outside the three relegation places.
Bexhill United were edged out 3-2 at home to a Newhaven side which secured second place in Sussex Division Two despite Paul Rogers giving the Pirates a second minute lead. Newhaven soon levelled, however, with a header from a free kick and a deflected effort put them ahead.
Rogers bundled home his second of the night to restore parity 10 minutes into the second half only for Newhaven to grab a winner with a goal Bexhill were convinced was offside. Bexhill goalkeeper Gavin Bourne saved a Newhaven penalty, but the hosts couldn’t conjure up an equaliser.
Westfield, meanwhile, are in action tonight with a trip to Mile Oak. Victory would put Westfield level on points with fifth-placed Broadbridge Heath, but defeat would see them drop below their opponents.
See Friday’s Observers for full reports on each of these matches.