Bexhill United Football Club moved up to fourth in the table courtesy of a 3-0 win over Southwick tonight (Wednesday).
First half strikes by Jack Shonk and Sammy Bunn, plus a late own goal, gave Bexhill the points in a Southern Combination League Division One home fixture played at Southwick as the floodlights aren’t yet up at The Polegrove.
Bexhilll manager Ryan Light said: “It was really good. I was really pleased with our first half performance, we were really in the ascendancy first half. Second half we never really hit the heights of the first half, but the lads really dug in to make sure we achieved our first clean sheet.”
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Bexhill started quickly and moved the ball very well on a difficult surface. They went ahead after 11 minutes when Craig Ottley’s diagonal ball found Shonk, who cut inside his man and struck a fantastic shot with the outside of his foot which flew into the far bottom corner.
Light ranked the second goal as probably Bexhill’s best of the season so far. A great team move ended with Wayne Giles laying the ball off for Bunn to run on to and fire a sweetly-struck 20-yard shot into the far corner.
Bexhill were comfortable at the break, but Southwick came out for the second period with all guns blazing and were the better side until around the hour mark. Bexhill goalkeeper Dan Rose, who was excellent all night, pulled off two or three fantastic saves to preserve the two-goal cushion.
The game became somewhat bitty after that with a few niggly fouls. Nathan Lopez had the ball in Southwick’s net after Shonk’s shot was spilled by the goalkeeper, but the linesman’s flag was up.
A spectacular own goal completed the scoring. A Southwick defender tried to swipe the ball away when around 40 yards from the home goal, but only succeeded in lobbing his own goalkeeper, who was outside the box.
Bexhill ought to have added another at the end. Jamie Bunn burst through and squared to Zack McEniry, who tried to tee up Lopez rather than shoot and a home defender got back to clear.
Bexhill: Rose; Robertson, McGuigan, McFarlane, Ottley; Holden, J. Bunn, S. Bunn; Shonk (Harley), Giles (McEniry), Lopez.
Southern Combination League Division One top half standings (played 7 matches unless stated): 1 AFC Varndeanians 19pts (+15 goal difference), 2 Steyning Town 18 (+10), 3 Alfold 16 (+13), 4 BEXHILL UNITED 15 (+21), 5 Hailsham Town 15 (+15), 6 Wick 15 (+3), 7 Littlehampton Town 12 (-1), 8 Selsey 11 (0), 9 Seaford Town 11 (-3).